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Friday, September 6, 2019

Guns and Straws

Photo Credit: Vladimir Palyanov, Unsplash

As Americans get back to normal -again- following a series of mass shootings in the US, there's a 'refreshing news flash' where common ground emerges: plastic straws.  While the number of injured and dying sea turtles is nearly impossible to tally, the number of homegrown mass shooters, the number of people dead and hurt in shootings, well that is known.  In a gutsy and guest rendered podcast my summary today is that all of this non-partisan agreement over straws - (heck even Trump is on board it seems in recycling them) - the gun debate continues as a debate. In not only my view of guns and straws that just sucks.  Listen now on Radio Public.

Monday, September 2, 2019

This image captures wonderfully the labor of brick making. The detail of the wooden cast that was formed and now becomes the mold for clay, brought about from the mixing of the water and the dirt, specifically located to be sufficient as a cold stone or a fired stone masonry, the filling and moving about such that air bubbles pop now (instead of later) and even the movement of the hands that manipulate the environment for one future brick. It is a labor - maybe of love, maybe of necessity, maybe of challenge - and certainly of skill. Labor Day is, in part, a celebration and memorialization of a movement where workers take on the impact of what it is that they (not their employers, or their government or their earnings even) contribute to make the lives of others better. Labor Day seems to be about a view that takes the "top down" mentality, flips it upside down ironically enough, and says to the world - if it were not for OUR labor you (society) would not be where you are and you would not have what you have. I often hear the stories (and so do you) of how it is various laboring folks of all professions and disciplines are explicitly and implicitly "expected to be grateful" for their jobs as if the job is all that there is to have. In American culture it is not uncommon for people of their work - to become it - and this too is often celebrated with accolades of accomplishment, pay, prominence and even notoriety. A job is something to have indeed - ask anyone who doesn't have one as they sit in some deprivation. The point of Labor Day is that a greater community CAN liken what laborers and workers do everyday besides it being their jobs. Regardless of who gives the job and who takes it away, the position of power is not nearly as significant as the labor of those who are commissioned to do the work of some quality such that a larger society want a product and therefore many lives are improved. The boss cannot be successful because of position. The work must be included - and even more real, more personal, and more alive than work - are the laborers who produce in every single detail and that IS celebrated.

- K. LaRose @
Photo Credit: Estaban Castle, Unsplash