09. March 2015
The wait for protection and national recognition for Chicago’s Pullman District is finally over, thanks to President Obama’s action on February 19. By using his authority under the Antiquities Act, as Presidents of both political parties have done before him, the President established Pullman Historic District National Monument. Through his action, and with bi-partisan support, the President has preserved an important, multi-faceted chapter of our nation’s history in perpetuity. The legacy of the Pullman workers resonates across class, across race, and across our country, including right here in New Mexico...Continue reading...
08. March 2015
Those who know me know that March 8th, International Women’s Day is, of all the year’s holidays, the one that most deeply claims my attention and my heart. This began in the 1970s, when I lived in Cuba and the date was widely celebrated. For years now, I’ve written an open letter—sent to the women I know, and also to the men I believe are truly concerned with women’s rights.
This year, as I sat down to compose my letter, I happened to glance at the front page of the International New York Times. Three headlines grabbed my attention...Continue reading...
08. March 2015
Few countries have been linked to the United Sates as long, as intimately and as painfully as Nicaragua. The relationship has always been complex, defying any generalities, and the odds are it is soon going to get a lot more complex.
As my wife and I are getting ready to depart for our first trip to Nicaragua, about which I will be writing on our return next month, I want to set the scene by discussing the peculiar, even unique, way the relationship between the countries has played out over the past century and a half...Continue reading...
06. March 2015
There are many lessons in the pages of our nation’s history, which we seem unable to assimilate, so we must repeat them in an endless cycle of disillusionment and destruction. We appear arrogant in our dealings with other nations, unilaterally deciding what’s best for the world, at the same time endlessly proselytizing about democracy. When foreign nationals feel that their internal lives are being manipulated and disrupted by U.S. intervention through military and monetary power, a blowback is inevitable. The infamous outlaw and revolutionist Pancho Villa raided the United States in 1916, his actions being an example of this backlash; we may extrapolate this lesson to September 11, 2001...Continue reading...
04. March 2015
If there is human life one hundred years from now, and analysts refer to our time, it may well be dubbed the Age of Lies like the Age of Enlightenment or the Age of Reason. Going much farther back into the mist of prehistory, they may call it the Period of Lies, like the Cretaceous or Jurassic. Of course for this to happen those analysts would have to retain some understanding of what constitutes truth and how to sort impressive advertising from what really was. This may be difficult because lies beget lies and the habit of truth is (sometimes permanently) eroded...Continue reading...
04. March 2015
I am writing to urge you to NOT approve the Santolina Master Plan and hope you will vote against this Proposal. Some of the most compelling reasons for rejecting this expansion include:
1. The geographic expansion that has dominated the County’s growth pattern over the past several decades has contributed substantially to the economic stagnation and quality of life erosion for Bernalillo County citizens. The benefits that have accrued to private developers have been at the expense of essential urban infrastructure development. Approval of the Santolina Master Plan will further dilute our already scarce resources...Continue reading...
03. March 2015
A while back, I promised to tell you the story about the dog who was afraid of flies. This golden retriever mix—let’s call her “Sugar,” because that is her human name—exemplifies how people are wonkier than Willy’s chocolate factory when it comes to training their pets. This story will butcher you; I myself narrowly evaded death, but it has a happy ending with, as you might recall, the great Kevin Spacey.
Speaking of Mr. Spacey, Sugar springs more leaks than the prematurely released third season of his Netflix show, House of Cards. Leaking is Sugar’s primary mode of communication. It’s how she indicates hunger, joy, complex arithmetic, and especially the presence of houseflies...Continue reading...
28. February 2015
This is the second of two columns on the idea of home.
Home, it is said, is where the heart is, but it is also where the body is. During my childhood, my body was at an address I still remember—1624 Peachtree Street in Atlanta, Ga.—while just about all of my subsequent addresses have totally disappeared from my memory.
That early home was on the northern fringes of a small, relatively isolated town that was not yet a metropolitan area and mostly lacked suburbs. The house had been constructed and expanded in bits and pieces, like many an old house built when times were hard during the Great Depression...Continue reading...
28. February 2015
Sweet name for a new place.
I cruise your supermarket with poetry
in my heart. I finger the Pendleton,
spend a lot of time at the Pendleton blankets,
and if time is money I own a Chief Joseph.
If time is money I sleep in a Best Western
with metal stallions rearing out front...Continue reading...
27. February 2015
Local artist Heidi Pollard has seventeen new gouaches at The Outpost Performance Space, 210 Yale Blvd. SE. The show opened February 6th and will be up through the end of March. The small but alive and evocative images shouldn’t be missed; viewers are welcome from 2 to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday or during the Outpost’s regularly scheduled performances.
In contrast with most spaces that are not designed specifically as galleries, The Outpost is a good place to see art. It shows this work off to its best advantage, the pristine gray walls really popping the luminous colors....Continue reading...