Archive | Social Change


The Perfect Storm

The Week of August 18th, 2023 carried an interesting debate among liberal columnists on the causes of Trump populism. In the article, MAGA: Are Elites to Blame? David Brooks of the New York Times argues that the chief cause of MAGA is economic—that meritocracy and globalism has confined prosperity to the educated class. Zach Beauchamp […]

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What Has Happened to Us?

I’ve just finished reading Imperfect Heart: a Journal, a Book club, and a Global Pandemic, a good writer friend’s* as yet unpublished chronical of the Covid pandemic. A blend of non-fiction and fiction, the book opens in April 2020 at the start of the pandemic, leads up to the January 6th attempted coup, and ends […]

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Motherhood & Freedom

Sunday is Mother’s Day, the twenty-four-hour period of required respect for the women who shaped us, and which, for today’s women, is life’s greatest cause of ambivalence. In my day, motherhood was the default occupation, the expected role of adulthood. Today women are urged to remain “free” to develop themselves, their careers, their interests and […]

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The Cause of It All

Anyone you talk to will be happy to tell you the root cause of today’s social, economic and political ills, and I’ve certainly done my share of that. However, I’ve spent most of my time pointing at the liberal’s contribution to these upheavals. It’s time to turn to the other side of the coin—the hyper-individualism […]

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Sanitizing the Language

Readers should be warned that the following is written by a deaf-old-woman-writer who loves the language in all its dimensions. I’ve lived long enough to remember previous efforts to change attitudes by manipulating the language, and I urge political correctness proponents to look more carefully at the consequences of those previous attempts. I understand the […]

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Fear of Chaos

  Two weeks until Election Day and former President Obama declared he was through giving speeches—he was out of words. Amen—my feeling exactly. In an election that is more vital than any midterms of recent history, we cannot communicate with—cannot reach—half the voters of the country.  Both sides believe the oligarchy of the rich has […]

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To My Fellow Midwesterners

    I’m a Midwesterner. It’s been a long time since I left, but I’m still a Chicagoan—from Carl Sandburg’s “Hog-butcher of the World” Chicago. The Chicago of my day was the rail center that brought the farm to market. Though I was born, raised, educated, and married there, my roots are in the small […]

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Words Change Us

I’ve talked before about how shifts in the language have changed the political climate. How, when “opponent” became “enemy,” “debate” became “battle,” and “compromise” was called “selling out” politics went to war. Our minds followed the words, and the climate soured; war words became an accurate description of political life—except to those of us who […]

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  In my last blog, I talked about the power of respect, the effect that being respected as a woman had in my own life as well as the cruelty of mockery and belittlement. In writing it, I realized how central respect is to our democracy. In How Democracies Die, Levitsky and Ziblatt call lack […]

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On Being a Woman—a Long View

I go back a long way. I came of age before anyone questioned the role of women. I welcomed marriage and looked forward to motherhood, delayed until my husband finished graduate school. I believed that my role was the easier one, and one I was trained and well prepared for. It was the men who […]

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Hyper-Individualism and Higher Education

    I talked in my last blog about the degeneration of civic education in our high schools and the consequent absence of any sense of obligation to the community in my college students. The primacy of hyper-individualism has affected—or infected—our higher education institutions as well. I lived most of my adult life either in […]

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