What’s in a name? Reconciliation

One literally monumental success story that went under-reported in 2022 was the U.S. Department of Interior’s commitment to review and replace the names of over 650 geographic features on federal lands. This was no frivolous endeavor, but a concerted effort to revoke place names that are repugnant in both racist and sexist terms.

Looking Ahead

We can expect two full years of such obstruction and chaos, at a time when the Supreme Court appears bent on undoing years of settled opinion around issues we consider to be at the heart of our democracy.

Here’s Looking At You, Kid

The 80th anniversary of the movie Casablanca occurs in January 2023. It was a movie, I first became familiar with as a teenager, growing up in Hollywood in the late 1960s. It was shown often on television and late at night. I have seen it countless times and am able to quote lines from it.

Comfort in Dark Times

The end-of-year holidays are a time for company and celebration, a time for guilt-free overeating and overspending. It is also the darkest time of the year-short days and long nights. Another darkness has affected our country now.

Book Review: How the Other Half Lives by Jacob A. Riis

Jacob A. Riis documented the squalor and misery of those who lived in lower Manhattan during the end of the 19th Century through to the early 20th Century. 

Book Review: Kings Row by Henry Bellamann

Published in 1940, Kings Row is out of print and hard to find, which is surprising for a book that was hailed in a movie trailer as the best book of the year. The movie version, released in 1942 with an all-star cast, included Robert Cummings, Ann Southern, Charles Coburn, Claude Rains, Betty Field, and former U.S. President Ronald Reagan. In fact, it has been suggested that this film is considered to be Ronald Reagan’s finest work before he later ventured into politics. 

The Senate elections exposed the MAGA movement's weakness

Two core beliefs define the MAGA movement. The first and most prominent is loyalty to the founder of the MAGA movement, Former President Donald Trump. They are the bedrock loyalists promoting the big lie that he won the 2020 presidential election due to his victory being stolen. 

Turn Back to the Light

The winter solstice occurs the day after we turn in grades, and signals both the beginning of winter and the earth’s turn back toward the light. That’s part of the larger world that includes the university. Just as we’ve started to see real activity in our communities, health authorities have recommended wearing masks indoors, given the high number of cases of flu, COVID, and RSV that are overwhelming our hospitals. As we see in so many parts of the public arena, we are not out of the woods yet.