As a public health nurse working with underserved communities in Massachusetts in cancer prevention, I’ve been greatly challenged as we look at racism and inequality in communities that we serve. We are doing this because the evidence of health disparities in non-white communities is overwhelming. One of the ways to begin to address this is … Continue reading A Life Overseas – “But they aren’t as smart as I am”….
In the United States, Charlottesville, VA has occupied the top news for over 48 hours. This is not a cause for celebration, but a tragic reality where a rally largely controlled by alt right racists turned violent and ugly. The city is now mourning the death of a young woman who died needlessly as the … Continue reading From Privilege to Responsibility
It's difficult to write today, but it would be worse to keep silent. "I don't want to become a #hashtag. Becoming a #hashtag is a very real fear in my community." Yesterday at the end of a long and good meeting, a few of of us began talking. The conversation was around race and privilege, … Continue reading #Hashtags and Relationships
These past two days I've been at a summit on race and equity. Specifically, A Call to Government and Community. The conference goes across spheres and participants represent housing, justice, immigration, education, the arts, and health. It has been full of stories and ideas --ideas that I agree with and ideas that I don't agree with. … Continue reading Unequal Treatment
What happens when a bitter racist is transformed? In the movie Gran Torino, Walt Kowalski (played by Clint Eastwood) is a bitter old man living out his years in a neighborhood that has changed from working-class white to Hmong and Chinese. He does not like it and makes no pretense of civility and no apology … Continue reading Donald Trump, Walt Kowalski and Hope for Transformation
Blogger's note: I have received some good feedback and pushback from this article - always good when you write a piece like this. Based on the feedback, I realize that it's is not necessarily the simple black and white issue I have made it to be. I still hold to my original premise, that many, … Continue reading Traveling While White
"Did you hear? Did you hear what they did about immigration?" My friend's eyes were big and troubled. "No." I said. Janira is originally from El Salvador. She has been living in the United States for over 15 years. She works at a hospital, pays taxes, and tries to get by. She is a U.S … Continue reading Truth Echoes
I sit in a row of cubicles toward the front of a large building in downtown Boston. One of my cubicle mates is a man from Malawi that I'll call Paul. He is a handsome, intelligent man and we have become good friends in the past few years. Today he asked me if I had … Continue reading For my Friend and the Kids he’s Raising
From Echoes of Reconciliation on a Monday Morning.
“For a serious offense writes” psychiatrist Aaron Lazare “such as a betrayal of trust or public humiliation, an immediate apology misses the mark. It demeans the event. Hours, days, weeks, or even months may go by before both parties can integrate the meaning of the event and its impact on the relationship. The care and … Continue reading Unequal Treatment and Tuskegee
What happens when a bitter racist is transformed? In the movie Gran Torino, Walt Kowalski (played by Clint Eastwood) is a bitter old man living out his years in a neighborhood that has changed from working-class white to Hmong and Chinese. He does not like it and makes no pretense of civility and no apology … Continue reading Making Peace with Changing Communities