April 21, 2017 / From the Editor
In a moment when so much information is unreliable and even more distressing, we feel …
March 24, 2017
Every Friday, we will publish a short list of a few articles that have caught our attention. This is what we’re reading this week:
The Presidents of 48 American Universities Penned a Letter to Donald J. Trump:
The order specifically prevents talented, law-abiding students and scholars from the affected regions from reaching our campuses. American higher education has benefited tremendously from this country’s long history of embracing immigrants from around the world. Their innovations and scholarship have enhanced American learning, added to our prosperity, and enriched our culture. Many who have returned to their own countries have taken with them the values that are the lifeblood of our democracy. America’s educational, scientific, economic, and artistic leadership depends upon our continued ability to attract the extraordinary people who for many generations have come to this country in search of freedom and a better life.
An interview with activists on local power, independent political force, and resistance:
People here aren’t interested in tired old debates about inside vs. outside strategies—the ballot vs. the street—as if they were mutually exclusive, rather than potentially complementary. This broad opposition moment is giving us the opportunity to intentionally blur the lines between electoral fights and in-the-streets social movements. At the national scale, we have the opportunity to recruit a huge crop of progressive candidates who emerge from powerful movements—who are accountable to movements. That’s why going into 2018 and 2020 we can do much better than deliver majorities back to corporate Democrats; we now have the opportunity to build an independent political force powerful enough to change the entire direction of mainstream politics.
Why Democrats need to suspend the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court:
As even Republicans begin to acknowledge the cloud over the Trump administration, congressional Democrats should argue that a compromised president should not be able to appoint a Supreme Court justice who might sit on that bench for 40 years. Especially since McConnell blocked the moderate Merrick Garland, age 64 to Gorsuch’s 49, who was chosen by Obama specifically to win GOP support. It didn’t work. Republicans argued last year that “eight is enough” on the Supreme Court (some even threatened to keep Clinton from making a pick for the coming four years). Democrats should officially agree, for now.
A musing on liberalism, being a radical, May 1968 & what resistance should not look like:
This year a lot of white people woke up. But it is hard to stay woke. So many outrages are committed every day that outrage becomes a chore. So much violent hatred—the shooting of Indian engineers, the desecrated Jewish cemeteries—is ignored and excused that demands for condemnation feel like nagging. So regular are the deceptions that lying is a joke, so acute the anxiety that boredom would be a relief.
Scientific research complicates questions of birth-sex and upholds a spectrum of gender fluidity:
The speech team that had performed in New York City the night E and I met was getting ready to travel to a national competition in California, and Jane showed me the email she’d sent the coach to pave the way. E might be seen by others as male, Jane wrote, now that her hair was so short and her clothing so androgynous. She would probably use “both male and female bathrooms depending on what situation feels safest,” Jane informed the coach, and “will need to tell you when she is going to the restroom and what gender she plans on using.” I asked Jane, the night we met, where she’d place her daughter on the gender spectrum. “I think she wants to fall into a neutral space,” she replied.
Check out the latest book by our very own Editor-in-Chief, Dan Rhodes, Organizing Church: Grassroots Practices for Embodying Change in Your Congregation, Your Community, and Our World. Available for purchase on Amazon!
The 21st century is the age of community organizing, from rallies in the streets to online movements for change. What if congregations embraced community organizing? Organizing Church offers a unique perspective that blends proven principles of community organizing and research on socially active congregations into a formula that will revitalize and empower churches as change-agents. Seasoned pastors and community activists Tim Conder and Dan Rhodes will help pastors and other church leaders build healthier congregations, create a deep culture of discipleship in their community, and respond to the challenges presented by the global culture of the 21st century. Organizing Church is the essential field guide for joining the social justice movement today.
Willow Mindich is a recent graduate from Colorado College, where she studied philosophy and psychoanalysis and founded Anamnesis: The Colorado College Journal of Philosophy. After a brief stint in Seattle, selling shoes, transcribing interviews, and teaching philosophy to fifth graders, Mindich has since relocated to New York and is pursuing further questions of memory, culture, and technology, while applying to graduate school.