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Current Events Education Haiku History Poems Poetry

Progress

We drink our coffee

Skid into our parking spot

Late, by two minutes

The day is a drudge

Much the same as yesterday,

As will be tomorrow

Oblivious to

The obliteration of

An entire culture

That’s what we call progress

Categories
Current Events Haiku History Poems Poetry

Clicks of the Desperate

“Doctors” with no oath

Looking to make a profit

Will descend on those

Who want their own choice

Tik toks and others

Will film “do it yourself” clips

And prey off the clicks

Of desperate girls

Boys without knowledge and

Men with few consequences

Will not be party

To the new shadows

Haunting the world of women

Categories
Haiku Poems Poetry

Sips of life

Sitting on my shelf

Is an eclectic collection

Of various mugs

Chipped, bruised, and faded

Or beautiful and pristine

Squat and short, tall and lean

Representing a moment

A collection of past lives.

Past jobs, past people

Past holidays and vacations

The cups tell a story

In sips.

Categories
Current Events Haiku Poems Poetry

Platforms

Art is political

You can’t convince me differently

Because at heart, art

Is an argument

Artists want you to feel or

Think or see one way

The picture is cropped

Colors are chosen carefully

Scenes are deleted

Yet, we are silent

When it comes to disaster

Art doesn’t pay well

And we’re scared to speak

When we should be scared

To stay silent.

Categories
Education History Poetry Teaching

Essays

The typing of keys

The rustling of paper notes

Soft murmured questions

Intensity’s high

When students are writing

Categories
Current Events Education Haiku History Poetry

Dark

States are banning books

900,000 are dead

Now, the GOP

Have, of course, declared

Events of January 6

“Legitimate discourse”

2024

Is barreling fast toward us

A darkness is brewing

A darkness is brewing

Categories
Current Events Education History Poetry Teaching

Systemic Cycles

You may not know this.

But…in 1931,

The US started

Deporting citizens.

American citizens

Were rounded up and shipped out

It seems crazy right?

I’m talking about

People of Hispanic descent

Most had been born here

Why did this happen?

I’m so very glad you asked

The reason is bad…

The Great Depression happened

The US decided

To stop caring for citizens

Of certain origin

History matters.

Those who want to hide history

Want to make damn sure

It’s repeatable.

Don’t fall for the rhetoric

Teach real history.

Categories
Education History

The Causes of the American Revolution

As Told by Gifs (Part 1)

Have you ever woken up and really wished that there were a way you could learn about the American Revolution that spoke to you? Never fear, The American Revolution as told by GIFS is here!

Let’s start at the beginning. Britain, France, and the 13 Colonies end the 7 Year War in 1763 after—you guessed it— 7 years. A lot happened in this war, but the TL;DR version is that it cost Britain a shit ton of money, and resulted in the Proclamation Line of 1763 which didn’t allow colonists to go steal more Indigenous lands. But…if you’ve ever met a colonist…

After the war, which also took place in Europe by the way, stop buying into American Exceptionalism…

Britain was basically broke and since they went into debt partially by fighting the French for the American Colonists, Parliament turned to the 13 Colonies for help.

As you can imagine, the 13 colonies didn’t love that too much.

Let’s talk for a minute about the different taxes that Britain tried to impose. Actually, jk, it doesn’t matter because the colonists whined so much about the taxes that Britain repealed all of the laws.

…except one.

I want to be really clear here. The tea tax was the final tax imposed on the colonists, and it mainly hit the merchants buying the tea from Britain (though consumer prices went up, of course, because capitalism). Also, there were more regulations so people couldn’t bootleg tea anymore. Britain thought they were awesome. They’d finally made a tax that was going to stick, no one could possibly be angry!

I mean, I don’t want to belabor the point but…have you ever met a colonist?

This group of kids called the Sons of Liberty, which, by the way, would be described as Anti-Fa now, decided they were really going to stick it to the British and their tea tax.

And thus, we have the Boston Tea Party. I’ve included a dramatic recreation for you below.

The tea party, as fun as it sounds, actually cost the Brits a whole lot of money. Millions of dollars worth of tea was destroyed. My favorite part is that the Sons of Liberty trolled around the harbor for the next day or so, making sure no one came to steal any of the floating tea.

The Brits, of course, were super pissed.

The Boston Tea Party led directly to the Intolerable Acts…but you’ll have to tune in to part two for that.

Categories
Current Events Education Haiku History Poetry

Learning is Radical

“The classroom remains the most radical space of possibility” — bell hooks

The classroom spaces

Are under attack right now

To try to stop change

Education is

A powerful thing for kids

And adults alike

A lack of knowledge

Means keeping the status quo

While education

Means moving forward

We can not afford to stop

We must keep teaching.

Categories
Current Events Education History

The Weaponization of Gossip

In the workplace, it’s really about control.

If you’re a woman, perhaps you’ve been told you’re a gossip. Or, you’ve been warned against gossip. Perhaps you’ve even been forced to watch Tedx clips about why you shouldn’t gossip at work, given to you by some dude on the internet.

The term “gossip” tends to be a phrase that uniquely targets women, and the way in which women interact with one another. It carries a negative connotation, and people often consider gossiping as “bad.” In Puritan New England, gossip was called “gadding about”, even Martha Ballard, that great New England midwife, called herself a gadder. Probably because she had all the juicy details of everyone’s lives (and could testify in court if a woman named the father of an illegitimate child on her birthing bed).

Now, we call gossip “spilling the tea” or “hot gos” or, simply, “chatting.” Whatever you call it, it’s usually targeted at female groups, and, occasionally, used as a weapon within workplaces.

The Weaponization of Gossip

Some workplaces, usually female centered (though not always), attempt to “ban” gossip. It’s actually something I’ve heard a lot from fellow teachers discussing their workplace conditions. The problem with this is that gossip is a hugely broad term, and may be defined as anything “negative.”

By defining any negative speak as “gossip” and therefore banned within the workplace, it prevents women (or anyone), from discussing workplace problems or issues. In a world where male administrators may not listen to the concerns of their female colleagues, this is problematic. Additionally, a “ban” on gossip may create a culture of fear — where you may be worried to tell someone about a problem for fear of “being negative” and getting reported. It’s like, McCarthyism, but at work!

The fear of being perceived as “negative” prevents people from perhaps discussing important topics like, oh I don’t know, wages, harassment, internal policies, or other things that employees may want to take collective action on. A ban on gossip harms everyone, but can be especially harmful for any BIPOC employees. Bias is real.

And, there’s the rub. It’s that collective action part that administrators or bosses want to prevent.

Ok…so what?

So, what can you do? Well, obviously, the answer is to gossip about it. Because often what employers deem as gossip…is not actually gossip.

At its core, gossip is information. Information about time, work, pay, conditions, experiences. Information is powerful and information is almost always used as an avenue of change. On the flip side any attempt to control or hide information is almost always used to stagnate and maintain power.

So talk my friend. Spill the beans, the tea, gad about, chat, discuss, laugh, get angry, get sad, get happy and importantly — share information. Stay powerful.