I Think That You Oughta Know (formerly Eloquent Roundup)

Today, I would like to revive an old idea I had a couple years ago to share out information that I found interesting without the need for longer postings and without the Link List format that causes all sorts of problems in user experience. At the time, I called it the Eloquent Roundup because it came at the beginning or end of each week and summed up all the news I found interesting in the preceding days. With news being what it is recently (overwhelming and often hard to discern legitimacy), I decided to revive that in the form of a trifecta roundup, as often as I can muster to do so. Three topics with multiple backup sources for the information, a small amount of commentary from me and at least one enlightening comment from someone else, likely a perspective from my social media feed. This first time around, I thought it necessary to do something a little longer form, however.

Dear Reader,

I wanted to better educate myself about the Women’s March and some (definitely not all) of the underlying issues that led to its formation. I wanted to share a couple of the resources I found helpful in the attempt to assist in your understanding as well. While you may not agree with the approach that some of the marchers took in their stand, especially those that chose to be more vulgar in their verbiage, I hope that you can sympathize on the issues on which the movement is hoping to be heard; see the wonderful speech from a bilingual six year old.

The Women’s March on Washington and sister marches in neighboring cities were attempting to speak out against the now-president who has shown little if any respect for women in his words and actions and the recent steps that the Republican-led government have taken to dismantle and undermine institutions that assist all women, but particularly those of low-income or with otherwise limited access to a variety of necessary health services. Those marching may not be directly affected by these moves, but were standing in solidarity with those who are affected.

The Women’s March Unity Principles is a list of the issues they were attempting to combat with their peaceful demonstration. The following list is loosely based on those items.

In addition to the above, although not specifically called out by the march, the House has started down a path to dismantle the way ethics oversight commissions work in politics and make it easier to sell off federal lands, such as national parks that would be placed under state control.

Since all that information is out in the open, we can focus on the next protest and the next string of problems caused by this administration. Thanks for reading.


Read, Think, Share, Repeat

The Challenges of 2020

TL;DR: Follow this link.

One of the craziest things about Christianity during the protests of the last few weeks is the fact that there are churches out there not discussing the issues honestly, not taking the time to have the hard conversations, not devoting their Sunday services to betterment of the world and people around them. If you’re church isn’t talking about racism right now, if they don’t mention that black lives matter, instead focusing on platitudes that equate to the all lives matter” sentiment, it is time to start looking for a new church.

My wife and I meet with my home” church virtually via Zoom since the pandemic is still a thing. Kimball Avenue United Church of Christ & La Iglesia Episcopal de Nuestra Señora de las Américas (KANSA, together) combined in a collaborative way to create a single denomination focused on the needs of their community. They follow Christ together toward the vision of love, reconciliation, peace and justice. The justice looks like the demolition and rehabilitation of an old church building and its grounds into a community garden and labyrinth open to all who seek peace through contemplation.

I give this elevator speech to mention that COVID has not been kind to faith communities in general. Budgets have been slashed, funding and grants have been cut, and congregations in need are also working to serve those in need, who are less likely to be able to financially support their church in these times. KANSA in one of the good ones. They speak truth, they have the difficult conversations, they preach in a loud voice every Sunday that black lives matter, that racism has no place in the church, that the LGBTQ community deserves respect and support, and that Jesus was a social justice warrior, who fought for the least of these no matter who they were, where they were from, what they looked like.

In fact, Jesus was most harsh to those who had the means to help and decided not to answer the call.

These systems of oppression we are protesting have been around a long time; they have screwed up a lot of lives, they have been the reason for revolution and the downfall of entire civilizations, they don’t work. We need to find a better way to live by supporting each other. And support has to come in systemic, social, financial, and political ways, both national and local.

I am not local to KANSA anymore, but I support their mission, the way that mission manifests in the world, and the simple fact that they follow Jesus no matter how ostracizing that position can be at times. Which brings me to the point:

Thanks to a $10,000 matching gift’ from an anonymous donor, the challenge has become an opportunity. Over the next two months, we plan to raise at least $10,000 to meet the challenge. Through August 31, 2020, every donation we receive toward our 2020 Challenge” no matter how small or how large will be doubled by the matching gift.

KANSA is hurting financially and needs support, they do good work and are unabashedly progressive in their approach to our world. Donate now and see your contribution matched to keep one of the good ones fighting the good fight.

Thank you for your consideration.