Isolated in Detention

If you squint at the center of the horizon in the photo on the right, you will see the Tri-County Detention Center in Ullin, Illinois.  It is 354 miles from Chicago and 156 miles from St. Louis.  It is number … Continued


Revisiting Freedom of Religion

The very first clause of the very first amendment to the United States Constitution is about the Freedom of Religion.  It reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;” The men … Continued


Mockingbirds, Truth and Justice

My favorite novel is Harper Lee’s brilliant To Kill A Mockingbird, set in small town Alabama in the 1930’s.  The narrator recalls the events that happened when she, Jean Louise Finch (nicknamed Scout) was seven and her lawyer father Atticus … Continued


“I am an American”

When Amanda Standerfer was the Library Director at the Helen Matthes Public Library in Effingham in downstate Illinois she was disturbed by the snarky comments of some library patrons who were offended by kids in the children’s area speaking Spanish.  … Continued


Fourth of July Then and Now

When I was growing up in a small town in Illinois during the Eisenhower administration, Fourth of July was pure and simple: the children decorated our bikes and tricycles with red, white, and blue crepe paper to ride around the … Continued


Knowing Your Neighbors Can Affect Social Change

Last week I came home to discover little fliers stuck into the doors of three apartments on my floor, indicating a visit from the U. S. Census Taker. Now I know which people in my building are too lazy to … Continued


Politics Mixes with Everything!

South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu delivered the keynote for the International Conference of the Association of Fundraising Professionals on April 13, 2010. As he addressed 3,000 professional fundraisers from dozens of countries, I wondered how his remarks would be received. … Continued