Our Mental Health May Depend On Our Connection to the Natural World
1. Our Masks Tell the Truth
I didn’t want to wear a mask. The whole thing felt foolish, dramatic, maybe unnecessary, and a tad unmanly. And if it wasn’t an n95, did it really protect me?
Yet I’ve come to love wearing the DIY version a kind neighbor made for my wife and myself. And I love seeing so many other people in public spaces wearing a mask as well.
For me, these masks have become a sign of solidarity and shared vulnerability. In our local supermarket, the profusion of masks among us telegraphs that we are all in this together. Masks have the dual function of protecting myself (a bit) and you (a lot, since their primary function is to prevent those who may be asymptomatic but unknowningly infected from spreading the virus). …
Hannibal of Carthage is considered one of the greatest military commanders in history. He’s mostly known for his daring invasion of Italy — crossing the snow-covered Alps with an army of 40,000 men and all those African elephants — a risky effort that almost brought mighty Rome to its knees.
He also was a companion of my adolescent year, a person I idealized because of his real-life courage, audacity, and military brilliance.
Let’s do the roll call of Hannibal’s military genius. At age 25, he carried out a seemingly impossible invasion plan, then defeated several well-trained and experienced Roman armies on their own soil. At the signature battle of Cannae, Hannibal defeated a Roman army twice the size of his own. …
What Elizabeth Warren Accomplished With Her Candidacy
Elizabeth Warren’s primary campaign affected me like no other I have been a part of, and I am still sorting out its impact. I think her candidacy was extraordinary.
I began working as a volunteer in NH for Warren last July. Most of my time was spent organizing a grassroots letters- to- the- editor group and helping with some local events, plus I did writing on my own about her campaign. In the course of all this, I had several chance conversations with Warren and a number of opportunities to watch her campaign.
What She Has…
Elizabeth Warren is demonstrating her ability to appeal to a broad coalition of voters as we move deeper into the primary season. Three endorsements from different points on the political spectrum are worth noting.
Recently, the Black to the Future Action Fund, a think tank and political organizing group formed by Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza, endorsed Warren. This is the first time they’ve endorsed a presidential candidate; previously they have endorsed state level candidates such as Stacey Abrams. Their endorsement was driven by the perception that Warren evidences a clear “analysis of how power operates in this country” and she is “the person who we think will best help black communities.” The B2F Fund emphasizes six priorities, including voter empowerment, economic development in black communities, support for families, criminal justice reform, climate action, and confronting toxic white nationalism. …
Helping Students Learn How To Listen
Take a look at the picture accompanying this article. Lots of hands raised, many students wanting to say something. Is this the sign of a health classroom of learners?
Maybe, maybe not.
Many students are focused on talking more than listening. Often they have the impression that the more they talk, the higher course participation grade they’ll get. This can result in listening to respond, not to understand.
The challenge to real listening in schools
Some of this is cultural, of course: we live in a time that can conspire against really listening to each other. Social media fosters talking more than listening. The ability to fully concentrate has degraded under the influence of constant stimulation, distractions, and competing demands on our attention — sadly, this is as true for teachers as it is for students. We fill what not long ago were small gaps of unscheduled time; we attend to the incoming tide of email and news, send texts to family and colleagues, listen to voicemail. …
So, we’ve been hearing a lot recently about Elizabeth Warren’s “electability” and whether men would “vote for a female candidate.” Those of us who have been volunteering for Warren’s campaign know that there are many men who plan to vote for her and an even larger number of men who would like her to be our next President.
Research backs this up. Studies and polls have consistently shown that men will vote for a female candidate, and often prefer the female over the male. …
What Elizabeth Warren Gets About The Common Good
“…(P)eople don’t even know. If poor people knew how rich rich people are, there would be riots in the streets.” — Chris Rock
“Harder to talk about than sex”
I became aware of the suffering hidden in plain sight in our society, ironically, because of my work consulting at institutions I’ve come to love: wealthy independent schools.
Leafy, sprawling campuses. Classrooms filled with teaching resources. Dining commons to rival upscale restaurants. These schools are amazing places, with incredible resources and very talented teachers and students. …