by Reid Fitzsimons
A privileged child is a child who has at least one parent willing to suspend prior self-indulgences. This can run the gamut from drinking, clubbing, hanging out with friends, partying, or whatever past enjoyments prove to be incompatible with nurturing parenthood, and to do so without resentment. A child of privilege has at least one parent committed to reading to him or her everyday, letting the child know they are loved, and willing to say “no” more often than “yes.” If this doesn’t transcend ethnic or racial differences then so much the worse for society as well as the children involved, especially because it doesn’t require unobtainable resources to say to say “no” and “I love you.”
http://www.c-span.org/video/?c4542228%2Fpresident-obama-eulogy-clementa-pinckney-funeral-service President Obama at his best, drawing on 2000 years of Christian tradition, also recently demonstrated by Rwandan Christians after their 1994 genocide and by Lancaster County Amish folks after their 2006 Nickel Mines school massacre (an example of forgiveness also explicitly followed by the survivors at Emmanuel AME church). The President here has kept a tight rein on his inclination to exploit crises for political advantage (limiting it to between about 25:00 and 30:00 in this 38 minute speech). That's progress, but he is still missing that part of the Christian tradition, which some Rwandan survivors have also missed, but which the Amish understand, and which Jesus himself clearly understood and articulated: that there is a possibility for Christians to do forgiveness and reconciliation, and experience Amazing Grace, without at the same time yielding to the temptation to lay their hands on political power which amounts to violence and coercion in another form.
by Reid Fitzsimons
Jarrod is in his early 30s and in a heteronormative marriage to Mindy, also in her early 30s. They are both products of middle-class suburbia and college-educated. Actually they met in college, where she studied art and computer technology and he eventually obtained a master’s in communications. Somewhat to his surprise, Jarrod transformed his college degree into a job with a tax-exempt group, eventually making a salary in the low-$100s with the title of Communications Director. The organization he works for has something to do with “advocacy” in a variety of areas including domestic violence, gender and race preferred small business opportunities, and community development. He discovered he has a knack for interacting with state and local politicians and has captured quite a bit of grant money for his organization. Part of him wonders why their offices are located in a nice high-rent area and the executive level salaries (including his) are not insubstantial, considering they are ostensibly advocating for the disenfranchised, but generally he convinces himself he is worth what he makes. ...continue reading
by Reid Fitzsimons
Any fair discussion about the TSA requires a disclaimer of sorts. The average TSA employee is looking for a paycheck, not confrontation and perhaps to be viewed as doing something meaningful in at least a small way, not just another assistant to the acting chief assistant to the deputy director in charge of special projects; I can assure those inexperienced in the workings of government there are plenty of the latter. Human nature dictates that wherever there is power to be had, running the gamut from petty to absolute, a certain type of person is attracted not to the mission but to the allure of authority. Throw in a uniform and I am sure there are enough TSA employees who derive something from their position other than the satisfaction of doing their job, so to speak, and they are likely well represented in management. As a point of reference, there are around 56,000 TSA employees and the budget is in the range of 7.4 billion.
I cannot think of any other citizen/government interaction that so routinely expects/ demands the former comport themselves as sheep. I’ve never heard of anyone who loves the TSA but certainly there are those who hate it. I do not hate the TSA and submit to the ovine requirements when necessary, but I have my tale, nothing particularly dramatic, which I am recounting here. ...continue reading