Last Word

Singing (r)Evolutions The American Commitment to Democracy, Part I

November 12th, 2020

By Charlie Barber

CMCBARB@msn.com

“Be as courageous as you can – If none of us is prepared to die for freedom, then all of us will die under tyranny.”- Timothy Snyder, On Tyranny, #20

“We are the Folk Song Army, Everyone of us cares;

We all hate poverty, war, and injustice, unlike the rest of you squares…

So join in the Folk Song Army, Guitars are the weapons we bring,

To fight against poverty, war and injustice. Ready! Aim! Sing!” - Tom Lehrer, 1965

“For years, say…

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Don’t take your breath for granted: A COVID experience

October 7th, 2020

By Sabrina Hornung 

sabrina@hpr1.com

It’s been a weird year…talk about the understatement of the decade. This week’s issue of High Plains Reader is our first issue since March. Who would have thought that the story of the century would be the one that would knock us out for over six months?

2020 was going to be my year I toasted my friends on New Year’s eve with the cheer…

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Time to listen and reflect

October 7th, 2020

By Wess Philome

ndstandforchange@gmail.com

This week marks at least 129 days since 5,000 people marched through the streets of Fargo in the name of justice and equality. Through many years of being an activist, I had never experienced that many people activated locally in the name of change until the George Floyd protest. It was a must that we took advantage of the moment. The only way I could personally assure this was to be a part of the core myself. We owed it to George Floyd. There…

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No Tolerance? —No Democracy; No Freedom, Peace Or Justice; No Habitable Planet!

October 2nd, 2020

No Tolerance? -- No Democracy; No Freedom, Peace Or Justice; No Habitable Planet!

“Is there in all republics this inherent and fatal weakness? Must a government of necessity be too strong for the liberties of its people, or too weak to maintain its own existence?” - Abraham Lincoln, July 4, 1861

“Mr. Lincoln never did get a direct answer to his question, nor did he really need one. He…answered it himself (in the course of his Presidency), and his answer was this: that in all…

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Boys (and Girls) Who Cried “HOAX!” Meet the Covid-19 Wolf

September 25th, 2020


“The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their proper name.” - Confucius

“On March 26, 2020, the people of the United States desperately needed a leader (for the Covid-19 Pandemic). Instead they got Donald Trump and Sean Hannity.” – Brian Stelter, HOAX: Donald Trump, FOX News, and the Dangerous Distortion of Truth, 2020

“Too many of us Democrats bought into the right-wing notion that government is synonymous with failure. At a time when Americans are being…

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The Birth(erism) of Trump’s Nation of Cowards

September 15th, 2020

“(Kafka’s) world knows no physical or moral order…We, the readers, are reliving our bad dreams…punishment is over all the characters, but the crime remains mysteriously hidden…” - William Hubben

“The specter of color is apparent even when it goes unmentioned, and it is all too often the unseen force that influences public policy as well as private relationships. There is nothing more remarkable than the ingenuity that the various demarcations of the color line reflect. If only…

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The Milwaukee Bucks and “Big Bucks” Put Racism in the “Penalty Box.”

September 7th, 2020

“The vast majority of African-Americans who lived in this land in the first 246 years of what is now the United States lived under the terror of people who had absolute power over their bodies and their very breath, subject to people who faced no sanction for any atrocity they could conjure.” - Isabel Wilkerson, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents, 2020

“The NFL is the most conservative, Republican and nationalistic of major sports leagues, despite (a)socialist profit-sharing…

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Endgame for John Wayne/Rambo/Trump, “Reality” TV and “Virtual” History

August 31st, 2020

“I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me.” – Ralph Elison, Invisible Man, 1951

“Although the (1965) Voting Rights Act was sponsored by a…pro-civil-rights president who was…a Southern Democrat, most Southern Democrats opposed it. However, (LBJ) could count on strong support from Republicans: In the House, 82% of Republicans voted yes, compared to 78% of Democrats; in the Senate, 94% of Republicans voted yes, compared to 73% of Democrats. But things…

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History vs. Propaganda; Pundits vs. Investigative Journalism

August 24th, 2020

“History, like payback, is a bitch.” - Chicago Dog

“History as a discipline began as a confrontation with war propaganda. In the first history book, The Peloponnesian Wars, Thucydides was careful to make a distinction between leaders’ accounts of their actions and the real reasons for their decisions. In our time, as rising inequality elevates political fiction, investigative journalism becomes the more precious.” - Timothy Snyder, The Road to Unfreedom, 2018

“If we…

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A Liberal Cause That Some Conservatives Are Finally Fighting For:  Fairness

August 19th, 2020

“The problem for white, liberal males in positions of responsibility in the 1960s (and later), whether at universities, banks, law offices, small businesses and corporations, or legislatures was that the intellectual arteries of their colleagues were clogged by racism, a racism driven by fears, phobias, and long-standing ignorance and prejudice.” - Charles M. Barber, Judge Aaron Jaffe: Reforming Illinois, Bloomington, IN: Author House, 2016

“…if history is any guide, a change in…

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