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  • Renee Cramer is a law and society scholar, a professor who teaches at the intersections of race, gender, law, and politics, and a wife-mom-friend who loves yoga, swimming, biking and her dogs - she tolerates running. Her latest book is on the way that our obsession with celebrity pregnancy enables surveillance and governance of average women, and she is currently at work on what it means to legalize midwifery in the United States.
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Staying Oriented . . .

Today on NPR I heard Roger Cohen speaking with Tom Ashbrook about the relationship between incoming president DT, and Russia. It was a helpful unpacking of the global instability potentially being unleashed by way of DT’s “strange obsession” (as Cohen put it) with Vladimir Putin. Sobering (as so much has been in the last 10 weeks). … Continue reading

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Now That It’s Official: Back to that Whole Safety Pin Thing

Four days after the election I went for a run on the trail near my house. As I approached each person on the trail I wondered “Is this person gloating and gleeful? Are they relishing an outcome that has me and so many folks beloved to me feeling violated and terrified?” I felt raw, afraid … Continue reading

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My beloveds . . .

My beloveds…..I say this with love and gentleness. I am in mourning (as are you)…but I say it calmly and gently (even while the blood in my body is running ice cold). We must organize. We must organize. We must begin (and continue) to organize right now. Each of us need to plug in somewhere, … Continue reading

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We All Need Healing

This morning I walked away from a school building that was on “external lockdown.” My children were inside. What a totally counterintuitive thing to do as a parent. But this seems to be kind of a new normal. My kids’ school is only 10 blocks from where one of two Des Moines area police officers … Continue reading

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White Kids and Black Lives

There’s so much uncharted territory in parenting. But, raising white kids differently than most folks of my generation were raised? With few (any?) roadmaps? At a time when the failure of decades of “colorblind” white parenting and tepid attempts at “celebrating differences” is exposed by news cycles that bleed day-after-day with stories of Black people … Continue reading

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Dear Police Chief 2

I didn’t have to wait long to hear back from the West Des Moines police chief. To his credit, he picked up the phone and called me. So, a few days after I sent my letter last week, Chief LaDue and I spoke on the phone for about a half hour. Chief LaDue explained the following to … Continue reading

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Dear Police Chief . . .

I sent this email to the police chief in my city two days ago. I urge you to send something similar to yours and to ask folks who live around you to do the same. I intend to follow up over the coming days by sending him examples (which have trickled in) of police officers … Continue reading

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If You’re a Cop . . . (or have cops in your life).

Dear Police Officers, Let me share a story that illustrates something like how this should go. A few months ago, my nephew T. was at school. A fellow student was relishing in a bag of Doritos he’d brought for lunch. The student was quickly deluged with other children clamoring for a chance to smell this … Continue reading

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When “All” Means None

Dear Fellow White Folk—especially (but not only) White Christians: As a Midwestern Lutheran, I have been to many potlucks. Casseroles and Jell-O salads abound. At their best, potlucks embody a community meal in which everyone contributes, feels at home, has fun, and has their fill. But sometimes people at the front of the line overestimate … Continue reading

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Life in a Swing State….

Life in a swing state….   ….with people I otherwise deeply respect vowing to sit out this election (whether because they supported Bernie or because the whole two party thing is corrupt and should be conscientiously objected by NOT VOTING) in my FB feed. Finally wrote this today [yesterday] after various posts (from people I … Continue reading

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