Let me begin by saying that I love love love love love the music of Bruce Springsteen and E Street Band. I own every album. I know the words to pretty much every song. Even the words to the obscure but haunting “County Fair.” So yeah, I’m that much of a fan.
Latest blog entries
Abortion is not an easy topic to discuss. Good people can hold very deep and yet totally opposite convictions about this issue. But I believe that no matter what we men feel about abortion, our voices on the issue of women’s reproductive choice should sound a lot like this:
Maybe our desire to blame women for everything that goes wrong goes all the way back to the beginning. To Genesis, 3:12, when God got mad at Adam for having eaten the fruit from the tree of knowledge. What did Adam do? As the old feminist saying goes: “The first chance he got, Adam blamed a woman.”
(Special thanks to Madeline McDaniel for inviting me to see a talk by Todd Minerson, Executive Director of the White Ribbon Campaign. And to the YMCA of Fredericton and the Muriel McQueen Fergusson Foundation for bringing him to town.)
I never had the good fortune to cross paths with Dr. Ottilia Chareka, a fellow immigrant to Maritime Canada. And now, because of a senseless, violent act, I never will. She is dead, and the police say that her all-too-brief, amazing life was ended by a brutal attack at the hands of her husband. If the charges against him are true (and there is every reason to believe that they are) it means that one man – for reasons known only to himself – was able to snuff out her brilliant light. And we are all diminished by the loss.
It is Mother’s Day, the one day of the year when we finally take a moment to honor the immense and continuing sacrifices that mothers make – first to bring babies into the world and then to raise those babies to adulthood, all the while uttering a quiet but fervent prayer that those children will have safe, healthy, happy, and fulfilling lives. Sadly, not all mothers are good mothers, and, tragically, not all children will be born into situations where they will have the opportunity to have a life that is safe, healthy, happy, and fulfilling.
In the mental health field there is probably no more controversial set of diagnoses than those that live on “Axis II” – the so-called “personality disorders.” Unlike the Axis I disorders – which are more likely to be illnesses in the more classic sense of the term (i.e. schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression) – the personality disorders can be thought of as being more like deep character flaws. They are less about what someone has, and more about what someone is.
This past week the clothing company J. Crew sent out an advertisement featuring a mother (who happens to be a J. Crew executive) playing with her young son. Both are having an uproariously good time. When you look closer, you realize that the mother has been painting her son’s toenails. Neon pink. “Lucky for me I ended up with a boy whose favorite color is pink,” reads the caption. “Toenail painting is so much more fun in neon.”
A boy with pink toenails! Oh the horror! Could anything be worse than that?
I have recently had the opportunity to supervise several dances at both the high school and middle school levels. And at both levels I have seen pretty much the same thing: while most of the girls are out there dancing and having a great time, most of the boys are standing around with their hands in their pockets looking not quite sure what to do with themselves. Acting goofy. Acting superior. Acting cool.