Monthly Archives: March 2013

Roundtable calendar: Upcoming Events

Here are the upcoming events from the Tower Grove Roundtable calendar. You can click on them for more details, print the schedule or subscribe to the calendar by clicking the “google calendar” button on the lower right. The Tower Grove Roundtable group will be meeting to discuss our peace/justice/social passions and how to become more involved in our community through those interests. Please contact me for more details.

Arch Tax – Prop P alternate views

We narrowly voted to endorse this measure at the last EWIDA meeting – people were uncomfortable about regressively raising sales tax for a nontransparent public/private partnership.

Warning:  I realize the 24thstate blog has a Tea Party slant – while I don’t endorse the views, I do think this article provides some interesting information.

The Arch Tax: Bryan Cave Lobbies for Neighborhood Improvement Project, Invoices St. Louis County

Federal Judge Overturns Missouri Law That Would Let Employers Deny Contraception To Their Workers

I haven’t patronized Hobby Lobby since they refused to comply.

via Truthout

Citing the constitutional supremacy of federal laws over state-level legislation, U.S. District Judge Audrey Fleissig has struck down a 2012 Missouri law that “required insurers to issue policies without contraception coverage if individuals or employers objected because of religious or moral beliefs.”

The law was meant to effectively nullify Obamacare provisions requiring all employers to provide contraceptive coverage without an additional co-pay. It was passed after the Missouri state legislature overrode Gov. Jay Nixon’s (D) veto of the measure.

In an effort to mollify concerns from conservative critics of the contraception mandate, the Obama Administration recently issued clarifying rules on which employers — specifically, religious organizations — will be exempt from the Obamacare provision. Still, that hasn’t stopped for-profit companies like the crafts chain Hobby Lobby from bending over backwards to avoid complying with the law and providing their workers with affordable birth control.

Legally speaking, however, such companies are reaching when they claim that the Obamacare mandate is invalid under current law, and judicial decisions that claim otherwise are simply incorrect. In fact, a Bush-appointed judge rejected a legal challenge to the reform law’s contraception requirement from a Missouri-based Catholic business owner late last year, writing that, federal religious freedom law “is a shield, not a sword” that “is not a means to force one’s religious practices upon others.” Ultimately, the issue will likely be settled by the Supreme Court.

Roundtable Calendar for this week

Here are the upcoming events from the Tower Grove Roundtable calendar. You can click on them for more details, print the schedule or subscribe to the calendar by clicking the “google calendar” button on the lower right. The Tower Grove Roundtable group will be meeting to discuss our peace/justice/social passions and how to become more involved in our community through those interests. Please contact me for more details.

Women’s History Month event

I am hosting another mini-panel at the Thurman Grill – this time in honor of Women’s History Month.  I have gathered women from our community who have “lived” the feminist movement to share their experiences and struggles with us.  I can’t wait to hear from these women – I hope we will be energized and engaged and empowered to refute any sister’s claim that feminism hasn’t benefited our lives!  See you then!

Women's history panel

Wake up, sleeping beauties!

This has become my new favorite quote:

“The greatest mistake of the movement has been trying to organize a sleeping people around specific goals.  You have to wake the people up first, then you’ll get action.” — Malcolm X

I hope you’ve noticed my new calendar format – I have packed it with all the peace, justice and community activist events I can find from St. Louis.  This is part of my “wake up” plan – find out what my neighbors are passionate about, and point them in the direction of others who share their passion.  It is about getting active and getting connected and sharing experience.  Please be on the lookout for some more details on this effort – it is in a nebulous phase right now, but I can see it organically coming together!  Please subscribe to my website as well – either the mailing list if you like email updates, or rss feed if you take news like that.  And let me know – what are you passionate about?

The Inconvenient Truth Behind Waiting for Superman

This has been a recent hot topic for me as I battle for the education of all children in my neighborhood.  SLPS has chosen to close Sherman elementary school, a walkable neighborhood school and will probably relocate our children to schools too far to walk, they will have to be bused, which opens up a whole can of dysfunction.  A lot of my frustration is the complacency of the neighborhood association and other groups to rally around “the children” and demand better for them.  These groups are quick to blame crime and safety issues on the youth but not work for inclusive community change.  I believe it stems from 2 charter schools that are on the outskirts of our neighborhood – South City Prep academy and CityGarden.   IMO, these schools assuage the guilt of well meaning parents who want to live the urban hipster lifestyle but are still afraid of committing wholeheartedly to their community.   I have had discussions with my neighbors and am so so careful not to make any personal judgements on their choices.  I just assume they don’t know any better, and try to educate them about how charters are destructive and how they polarize a community into haves and have nots.  But I have gotten personally attacked – “how can a parent use their child as a guinea pig” (for putting them in the SLPS), “you could say magnets are destroying the schools since they have a lottery too” (my kids are in magnet public), “I just want to do what’s best for my child” (assuming I don’t?).  Sigh.  I know that guilt can make people defensive and lash out and so I guess I can’t blame the person, they need to see it in their own hearts.  All I can do is educate.  And rinse and repeat.

Happy International Women’s Day!

You NEED to watch this fantastic series on PBS – “Makers – Women who Make America”!  It’s a three-part series that chronicles the birth of the women’s movement, the new balance of home and work and the ramifications of the movements into the current era.

I’m also putting together a Women’s History Panel featuring women from our neighborhood who have lived the women’s lib movement and felt the struggles – it will be Monday, March 25 at the Thurman Grill – look for more details to come.

Watch Part One: Awakening on PBS. See more from Makers: Women Who Make America.