Young black woman with short ringlets and with a kind of sad expression

At first glance, there is not much in common between the 19-year-old single mother living in the Kibera slum of Kenya pictured here and the Ohio State students pictured below. More than 7,800 miles separate them, they’ve never met and they lead very different lives, but one issue connects them.

Mercy is a patient at her local Family Health Options Kenya (FHOK) clinic, which no longer receives federal aid from the U.S. because of Trump’s Global Gag Rule. Mercy depends on the health care and family planning services FHOK provides to give her daughter the best possible life, and these Ohio State students are fighting to make sure those services stay available to Mercy. They volunteer their time and efforts to resist and organize against this dangerous policy.  

Book cover with the words Nuts and Bolts the ACORN fundamentals of organizing by Wade Rathke

Let’s be honest.

There are many reasons that people decide to build an organization. Anger is one. A rage at injustice or an action by the government coupled with a recognition that your one voice, even yelling, will neither be heard nor will it create change, is often enough. Sometimes it is a mutual agreement between friends or like-minded individuals to all stand together and dive into the deep end of the pool and see if an issue can be attacked, a campaign created, or maybe an organization formed. Sometimes it is neighbors or fellow workers aggravated about a persistent issue or grievance that forces collective action. Sometimes it starts, as it usually did with ACORN, with someone knocking on your door. There can be all manner of triggers that begin organizations and without care, there can be as many that stunt its development or suffocate its future from birth.

Issues, grievances, inequities, and injustices are all reasons to build campaigns, but for an organization to live and win it has to have structure. It is important to be humble to the task, even while hopeful of the future.

Book cover that's red white and blue with a black and white photo of Robert Kennedy as a young man in a suit walking through a crowd on both sides of a street and the book title at top and the words From Power to Protest After JFK

After the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, nobody other than his widow, Jacqueline, suffered worse than his brother, Robert, the attorney general. For Robert, his relationship with his brother was everything; he scarcely existed outside of it Pain was seared into his face and was palpable; within a few weeks after the murder, he seemed to have aged years. The death of President Kennedy and the end of all they hoped to accomplish so unsettled RFK that family and friends feared for his well being. In the end, it was his wife, Ethel, who brought him around. A very devout Catholic, she was certain that the president had gone straight to Heaven and they would be together again for all eternity.

Front half of a side view of a rhino with a big horn

One way to start your vegan journey is to eat like a vegan one day a week. That way you get a chance to taste some delicious meat-free dishes without the stress of going vegan cold turkey, to turn a phrase. As you slowly move away from animal products in your diet, you’ll discover you may find you don’t need meat, dairy, and eggs to satisfy your hunger.

Contrary to many people’s belief that eating meat makes you strong and powerful, think about the mammals who are vegan every day of the week. The top ten vegan animals, as listed by “Vegan Souls” are:








Some whales



Geoengineering, according to the Royal Society of the United Kingdom, is defined as "the deliberate large-scale manipulation of the planetary environment to counteract anthropogenic (man-made or corporate-caused)climate change" and divides methods into two types: carbon dioxide removal from the atmosphere, and solar radiation management aimed at reducing heat coming in (from the sun)or reflecting more of it out.



I write this week’s Duty to Warn column the day after the biannual (July 7-8, 2018). Sunday evening, over 8 hours after the last the last plane touched down, a heavy thunderstorm partially cleansed the area of some of the toxic aviation fuel residue that contaminated the air, soil and water in the area. The weather during the previous 72 hours however, was perfect, with clear blue skies and 80 degree temps that have persisted now for nearly 4 days. Today, Monday, July 9, the skies continue to be deep blue and clear with actual cumulous clouds.


While the world watched and waited with bated breath for the outcome of the substantial global effort – involving over 100 cave divers from various countries, 1,000 members of the Thai Army and 10,000 others in various roles – to rescue a team of 12 young football players and their coach, who were trapped inside a flooded cave in Thailand for 17 days, 850,000 children were killed by human adults in other parts of the world, many of them simply starved to death in Yemen or other parts of Africa, Asia and Central/South America.


Trivia Pursuit Question of the Review: What great film director tried to adapt Theodore Dreiser’s “An American Tragedy” in the early 1930s?


One of the best things that theater and film can do is take us long and ago and far away to experience actual historical events and figures. An excellent case in point is William Manus’ WWII-era set Their Finest Hour: Churchill and Murrow, which co-stars Michael Karm as the Prime Minister, Tyler Cook as the CBS broadcaster and Chantelle Albers as Pamela Churchill Harriman. This drama, which brings alive the Battle of Britain and real life personages, is on the boards in L.A. at the Brickhouse Theatre through July 22.


Yellow background with black words saying Black Lives Matter

In a recent column in The Columbus Dispatch, Robert Cooperman talked about the challenges he and other conservatives face in the liberal-dominated theater scene. It’s a natural topic for the Ohio University-Lancaster professor, whose troupe, Stage Right Theatrics, hosted Columbus’s second annual Conservative Theatre Festival in January.

At the end of the piece, the Dispatch announced the troupe’s upcoming production of "Ferguson: Truth Matters," Phelim McAleer’s controversial play about the 2014 shooting of unarmed black man Michael Brown by police Officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Mo. The work was described as a “right-wing view” of the fatal incident.

“That’s kind of unfortunate,” Cooperman said of the description, noting that the play’s dialogue was taken verbatim from testimony at grand jury hearings held to determine whether the shooting was justified. “It’s really not a right-wing version.”

Boy doing a jump n a skateboard over a railing

Thursday, June 21 was Go Skate Day, which was changed to Sunday because of rain. Last time I tried to Go Skate during Go Skate Day I manage to manual a curb. A manual is a trick where you ollie up onto a surface and either coast on your back wheels or front wheels.

This year I decided to watch Embassy Boardshop's Go Skateboard Day which was held in at the Dublin Skatepark. Why am I always in Calabasas? Because they didn't fix Dodge when it would've made sense. It's OK. There are some meetings where they are building a new park at Driving Park.

I arrived at Dodge and ran into Shane Mastell who skates with all the dudes from the era Epicly Later'd was spawned from, though he is a little younger. He looked like the late Dylan Reider so we discussed beauty professions.

Skateboarding is one of those things you can't really fake. There many styles but kids know if you're wack. Shane was there because his friend John Simms was one of the judges. Simms is one of the best skaters in the history of Columbus skateboarding. Simms has a new ig (@dudleyclips) that shows footie from 90's skateboarding videos he had at home.

A line drawing of a doorway with a rounded top a book in front with a tree growing out of it and a banner going across saying Bexley

Wednesday, July 11; Wednesday, September 12; and Wednesday, November 14; 6:30-8:30pm, Bexley Public Library, 2411 E. Main St.

Why does the mere mention of the term “white privilege” seem to shut down meaningful dialogue? Why is it so scary? Is it real? Why bother? Join Suzanne Roberts, co-founder of Safe Conversations About Race, Dr. Maurice Stevens, Professor, Department of Comparative Studies, The Ohio State University, and Mary Lou Langenhop, as they facilitate a dialogue exploring the world we want to see and discovering what more is possible.

It is more and more undeniable that we live in a world where injustice is pervasive and tolerated. The host committee believes that we have to find another way beyond what we have inherited. They believe that the answers lie within us, collectively. Together, we will debunk myths and misunderstandings about white privilege and build conversation and community. This series will allow us to learn along the way, remembering that, no matter where each may be on the journey, we all can deepen our growth and understanding. You will leave with greater choice, skill, and new actions to create a more equitable society.


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