Tag Archives: social commentary

Challenge of the Ages

When my grandfather Norman T. Finlayson was born, his hometown of Dundas, Ontario, did not yet have electric lighting. In fact, the notion of electrifying a city, let alone homes, was brand new.  In the eighth grade, my grandfather stopped his formal education school, so he could get a job at a machine shop. He started as the janitor. Nearly 70 years later, he retired ...

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It’s Not Just The Message

Have you spent time looking at the cute videos on Facebook?  Not just the kittens and puppies at play, but the ones that show empathetic behavior amongst animals?  The ones that really get me are the bonds that are formed between different species, the dog and lion story, or the pig nursing a kitten… those little gems put a smile on my face, and offer ...

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Artful Supporters

museum support arts

There’s a black and white photograph in my high school yearbook. It’s of people in winter gear hanging around a railing at the skating rink where our hockey team played. A banner of the team’s name, Trojans, hangs on the railing. The picture is captioned “Athletic Supporters.” Sure, it’s sophomoric. It’s a high school yearbook. Because I was Co-Editor-in-Chief of the yearbook, I was called ...

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LA Theatre, Still Under Siege!

As the intimate theatre scene in Los Angeles is looking to stabilize itself, when in December Actors Equity Association, the national union for stage actors and stage managers, implemented a change in the use of its members by intimate theatres in Los Angeles.  Despite the fact that the change had been put to a vote among members and was overwhelmingly defeated by a 2 to ...

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The War On Science

Earth science climate

Are you a fan of NASA and the scientific output of our national laboratories? Better enjoy it while our open scientific culture lasts. President Lyndon Johnson declared a War on Poverty. President Richard Nixon, more cynically, declared a War on Drugs to indirectly target the black and hippie communities. And since taking office, Republican President Donald Trump has stepped up the unofficially declared War on ...

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Fanny

moon stamps usps fanny

I can’t tell you why she affects me so. I only know that if I let my guard down for but a moment, there’s a tightening in my gut and a wave of panic and helplessness comes over me. I need to be cautious. I must focus. I must keep it together. I don’t even know this ten-year-old girl. Not personally anyway. I have never ...

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The Responsibility of the Artist

protest pro99 fist

If 2017 already seems a little grim, well, it’s likely because it is  a little grim.  A lot of the country is miserable over the outcome of the presidential election.  Or, more precisely, what is presently happening as a result of that election.  Examples of unprecedented behavior include: Election Numbers:  Donald Trump falsely claiming he won in a landslide. Social Media Channels:  Donald Trump using ...

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Privacy Please

condom privacy sex

Though hard to imagine today, federal law once prevented anyone from using the U.S. Postal Service to send contraceptives. In fact, the same law prevented people from using the Postal Service to send ads of contraceptives or even educational materials  about them! This law was finally deemed unconstitutional in 1965. In Griswold v. Connecticut,  the U.S. Supreme Court found the law violated not the right ...

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Time To Rethink A Certain Reindeer Story

santa rudolph reindeer rankin bass

It’s December and the ubiquitous holiday music – playing since mid-November – reminds us that Christmas is just around the corner.  I’ve always been troubled by one particular Christmas carol I first learned at the tender age of 4: Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. You know the story, right? Young buck born with funny nose. Ostracized and bullied for it. Naturally, an extenuating circumstance (“one foggy ...

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The Divisiveness of Demographics

glass heart broken demographics

You remember the story of Solomon and the Baby?  Solomon was able to smoke out the true mother of the child by threatening to divide it.  The fake mother, who must have been awfully cynical, was down with his solution. That’s something I never understood.  I mean, what would this woman do with pieces of a baby? The de facto  motto of the United States ...

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