A Writer's 21st Century Memoir.

Education

The Theme For Women’s History Month

Elizabeth_Warren--Official_113th_Congressional_Portrait--It’s February 7th, 2017. United States Senators are debating whether to confirm President Donald Trump’s nominee for attorney general, Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala. Democratic Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren argued against the confirming Sessions and quoted the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., saying Sessions is a “disgrace to the Justice Department.”

Warren then read a letter, from 1986, by Coretta Scott King, the widow of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. In the letter, King called out Sessions’ fitness for the office sighting Sessions “has used the awesome power of his office to chill the free exercise of the vote by black citizens in the district he now seeks to serve as a federal judge.” Sessions did not win confirmation for the judgeship but was later elected to the Senate.

However, in the middle of reading the letter Warren was silenced by Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky who cited the arcane and rarely invoked Rule 19, which states that “no Senator in debate shall, directly or indirectly, by any form of words impute to another Senator or to other Senators any conduct or motive unworthy or unbecoming a Senator.” She continued to speak out despite before being forced to remain silent for the rest of the debate. (more…)


Why Does Black History Month Even Exist?

Black History Month“In celebrating Black History month, we can take satisfaction from this recent progress in the realization of ideals envisioned by our Founding Fathers,” the then U.S. government, President Gerald Ford said during a speech 1976. “But, even more than this, we can seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”

Black History Month has been celebrated annually in the U.S., Canada in February, and the United Kingdom in October and the Netherlands, where it’s also known as Black Achievement Month. The celebration began as a way to remember the important people and events in the history of the African diaspora, but too often I hear that people are wondering why Black History Month even exists? (more…)


What Is Art, And What Art Deserves To Be In Museums?

IMG_9992“What is art?” A short older lady with graying hair asked the high school intermediate art class. She waited for the small group of students sitting behind art supplies that were laid out on top of long wooden folding tables to slowly raise their hands. She pointed at a girl sitting near the back of the room. “Yes, you.”

“Art has to be beautiful,” she paused for a moment. “It should be a realistic reflection of all the good things God has created.”

Mind you, I was attending a private Christian school, and everything anyone said about anything had something to do with Jesus.

“Okay, but what about the post-modern art we see nowadays in pop-up galleries and museums?” She started to walk slowly down the row of parallel tables towards the back of the room. “What about the ‘art’ (she threw up air quotes) that isn’t realistic?” (more…)


Malala Yousafzai’s Last Day of School

The man was wearing a peaked cap and looked like a college student. He swung himself onto the tailboard at the back and leaned in right over us.

‘Who is Malala’ he demanded.

No one said anything, but several of the girls looked at me. I was the only girl with my face not covered.

That’s when he lifted up a black pistol. I later learned it was a Colt 45. Some of the girls screamed. Moniba tells me I squeezed her hand.

My friends say he fired three shots, one after another. The first went through my left eye socket and out under my left shoulder. I slumped forward onto Moniba, blood coming from my left ear, so the other two bullets hit the girls next to me. One bullet went into Shazia’s left hand. The third went through her left shoulder and into the upper right arm of Kainat Riaz.

My friends later told me the gunman’s hand was shaking as he fired.

-Malala Yousafzai, I Am Malala

(more…)


What Donald Trump Has Taught Us

March 8, 2016— Jupiter, Florida—Politico reports that Donald Trump’s campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, “forcibly” grabbed reporter, Michelle Fields, for the right-wing Breitbart news site, “nearly bringing her down to the ground,” when she attempted to ask a question after a Trump press conference. The next day, in Fayetteville, North Carolina, a black protester being escorted out of a Trump rally was sucker-punched by a white bystander. She later sat down with a local activist and spoke about her experience in a video that was posted to Facebook.

“I was called a n****r and a c**t and got kicked out,” she explains, and tells the interviewer that she was ultimately escorted out of the event by police.

So how can a man who is at the forefront of a hateful movement to divide America and instill violence at his large gatherings teach us anything? (more…)