June 4, 2020

We all make choices. We reap what we sow. In the ten days since George Floyd was killed by Minneapolis police, protests and riots have broken out all around the globe. Here in the United States, although most protests began peacefully, in many locations police showed up in full riot gear and launched tear gas into crowds, escalating them to violence. Windows were smashed, buildings were burned, and stores were looted. There were assaults, frequently from those who opposed the… Read more

June 1, 2020

First, the facts: On Monday, May 25, 2020, in the Powderhorn neighborhood of South Minneapolis, George Floyd was killed by Office Derek Chauvin of the Minneapolis Police. Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck until long after he was nonresponsive, and ignored Floyd’s pleas for mercy. Floyd is black. Chauvin is white, and has had at least 18 previous complaints against him. Three other officers–Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng, and Thomas K. Lane–were party to the arrest and the killing. They did… Read more

May 30, 2020

For those who can’t understand why the entire nation is violently protesting the death of one man—they aren’t. For those who believe the protestors are wildly off message—perhaps you should rethink your perception of what that message is. For those who don’t understand why so much rage is turned toward businesses who had nothing to do with George Floyd’s death—perhaps you misunderstand complicity. . . . I have thought long and hard about whether or not I should write this… Read more

May 29, 2020

First, you must ask yourself, did Jesus sin?   Forget about all the revolts and uprisings of the Hebrew Bible. Forget about the liberation of an oppressed people, again and again, through violent means by God’s own hand. Forget about Paul in prison or Peter on the cross. Forget about the scandal and the risk each and every apostle took each and every time they spoke or acted in service to the Gospel. Forget everything else, and just focus on Jesus… Read more

May 23, 2020

By the rivers of Babylon— there we sat down and there we wept when we remembered Zion. -Psalm 137:1 NRSV The first time I really engaged the 137th Psalm, I was a sophomore in boarding school. My choir sang a gorgeous setting of Don McLean’s “By the Waters of Babylon,” and something about the deep, unabashed lament stuck with me. Then I looked up the original text McLean drew from and found a couple verses later, How can we sing… Read more

May 23, 2020

Things I know about me: I know how to listen so that you know you’ve been heard. I know that if you are in crisis, I will not let your fists stop me. I know that when I need to, I can outrun three out of four paramedics, two RNs, one other tech, and a unit secretary to reach a naked, bleeding, psychotic patient who is trying to find his way home. Working in mental health during a pandemic comes… Read more

May 16, 2020

Change is coming.  Millennials are no longer the younger generation.  Generation Z is here to stay, and it’s worth paying attention to what they have to say. To date, Generation Z (born 1996 and after) are generally well-educated, progressive, diverse digital natives who are in many ways better prepared to lead our brave, new, technologically-driven world than any of the generations that have come before.  One trend this author has seen that expresses this generational identity best is the willingness… Read more

May 16, 2020

Here are the CDC Guidelines for masking, social distancing, hand hygiene, etc. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html There is not one Bible verse in existence that would change them. Over the past several weeks, I have watched Evangelical Christians–joined to the MAGA political right–claim that scripture commands them to gather in megachurches. It does not. All the books of the Christian Bible were written long before large Christian churches existed, and the writers would not have had any way to even conceive of what… Read more

May 9, 2020

Deliver me, O LORD      from lying lips,      from a deceitful tongue -Ps. 120:2 Words have meaning. About twenty years ago, I took a year-long statistics and experimental design course that changed how I viewed truth forever. The instructor not only showed us through real-world examples how the same set of data could lead to multiple conflicting conclusions, but also how the way we frame questions—the words we use—can change a respondent’s answer completely. A lot more… Read more

May 5, 2020

“ReOpen” protests seem to be all over the news. Guntoting activists storming state capitals. Thugs in SUVs blocking ambulance access to hospitals. Nooses and swastikas.  Shootings. Assaults. Who are they? Where did they come from? How did they organize so quickly? The answer, it turns out, is completely unsurprising. First, we know these are not oppressed workers rising up in a grassroots effort to return to their jobs. These people drive late-model pickups and SUVs, buy up expensive firearms and… Read more

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