“Nothing but legal, modern slavery, however kindly intentioned” (Malcolm X)

I have written here before about my work in child welfare (on disproportionality here https://teachingbeloved.com/2020/07/06/reflections-of-a-baby-addict-we-have-to-address-disproportionality-in-child-welfare/) and on the Do No Harm podcast here https://teachingbeloved.com/2021/01/08/teaching-with-the-do-no-harm-podcast/ and possibly some other mentions here and there about my love for children because it is a love that is deep and wide. And yet…the past few months I have beenContinue reading ““Nothing but legal, modern slavery, however kindly intentioned” (Malcolm X)”

“…it takes a whole hand—both hands—to grab hold of hatred”

Today is the anniversary date of what is often referred to (in Tennessee) as the Waffle House shooting. That is an accurate description as far as names go but one that has always felt too impersonal, because part of the loss of life in this shooting was personal to me. One of the people whoContinue reading ““…it takes a whole hand—both hands—to grab hold of hatred””

Happy birthday, Rosa Parks

“Memories of our lives, of our works and our deeds will continue in others.” I am making a short post in honor of Rosa Parks’ birthday, born this day in 1913. I learned about Rosa Parks in high school (maybe before, but I definitely remember high school) and I learned about her in the conventionallyContinue reading “Happy birthday, Rosa Parks”

Black history is American history

Black history is American history, all year long, not just in February. That being said, the textbooks and curriculum most often used in the US still minimizes the contributions of Black people with respect to scientists, educators, inventors, writers, and others. As Sachel Harris wrote in February of 2020, “With 80% of teachers being whiteContinue reading “Black history is American history”

50,000 Coaches and Community Resilience

Last week, at the very end of our between semester break, my family and I watched Akeelah and the Bee. I had seen it before, several years ago, but loved it just as much this time around. If you haven’t seen it, the basic plotline is that Akeelah, a middle school student, is enrolled atContinue reading “50,000 Coaches and Community Resilience”


Today has been unsettling. Simultaneously surprising (can this really be happening here? In the US?) and yet…not surprising at all. The past 4 years and then some have been building to this moment. I am thankful I have a few days to think before seeing a group of students. Between teaching a class on trauma,Continue reading “Honesty”

Bearing witness, and the 4 witness positions

I think I first heard the phrase “bearing witness” sometime in Sunday School as a child, in the context of one of the commandments to “not bear false witness” against my neighbor. I don’t know that I heard it in any other context until I was listening to my dissertation advisor, many years later, talkingContinue reading “Bearing witness, and the 4 witness positions”

Reflections on Dr. King’s Drum Major Instinct: Looking into 2021 and beyond

I came across Dr. King’s sermon “The Drum Major Instinct” about 4 years ago. He preached this sermon at Ebenezer Baptist Church on February 4th, 1968. This is two months before he was assassinated in Memphis. In this sermon he references what he would like people to say about his life during his eulogy, whichContinue reading “Reflections on Dr. King’s Drum Major Instinct: Looking into 2021 and beyond”

“We who believe in freedom cannot rest”: That’s what I’m professing

Between the pandemic, and the election cycle, and the general exhaustion level of…everyone…there were classes this semester that felt long and complex. Like every semester, I wanted to end this one with integrity, and to give something for students to think about as they leave (or “leave the meeting”). For one course in particular, thisContinue reading ““We who believe in freedom cannot rest”: That’s what I’m professing”

Everybody needs to clap hands and be happy: A playlist of belonging

Like many teachers this semester, I am teaching in what is called a “hyflex” model, which means that there are students in the “zoom room” at the same time that I have students in the physical space. My classroom for this particular course only holds 8 students (to maintain appropriate physical distance) so there areContinue reading “Everybody needs to clap hands and be happy: A playlist of belonging”