The artist dying to come out

When I was 20, I took a drawing class. I believed in the Liberal Arts tradition that college should be about more than just checking off a list of required classes. I believed that college should help you to become a better person. You should learn a career or trade, but also learn about yourself …

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Learning from failure

The teacher walked up and down the aisle handing out magic markers and brightly colored folders like you might find at an office supply store. I got a red one, the girl in front of me got an orange one. It was the first day of school, I was starting the sixth grade, and, of …

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Better together

I met them by accident. She was an older African-American woman with a permanent hunch caused by years of hard work as a housekeeper and hours slouched over a needle and thread. She couldn't see real well anymore, but her hearing was still pinpoint accurate. She could read a room without ever seeing it. In …

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Honey, can you help me find my keys?

I’ve worn glasses since I was in fifth grade. I hated them at first, because they made me stand out and, trust me, no one in elementary school wants to be called "four eyes." In time, though, I got used to them, they're just a fact of life. I’ve had big ones, small ones, rectangular …

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A frank look at white privilege

I remember the first time I heard the term “white privilege.” Oh, the African American student who yelled it at me, didn’t use the actual term white privilege, it wasn’t a word that you heard all that much back then, but his point was still the same. It was a chilly spring day, but the …

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It is what it is

I put my phone down in anger. I find anymore that one quick scroll or skim of social media or the day's news headlines can bring on the bitter taste of anger and sadness. I get frustrated that others can be so close-minded and selfish. I was still seething with anger when my wife, sitting …

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Speechless

When an African-American friend of mine after the Ahmaud Arbery shooting in February said he worried about running outside, I wasn’t sure what to say. Arbery, an unarmed 25-year-old, was fatally shot near Brunswick, Georgia, when he went out for a jog and was pursued by two white men. I tried to find the right …

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