Offered without commentary.
"Other countries have social safety nets. The U.S. has women." by Anne Helen Petersen
How Racial Health Disparities Will Play Out in the Pandemic | Dr. Uché Blackstock explains how the coronavirus will affect Black patients, and why that terrifies her.
Total Landscaping: A Masque, a poem for Sunday | "By the twang of the dildo, by the undertaker’s shoes,/some shall win and some shall lose."
Academic Bonus Read: “Let’s Not Pretend It’s Fun”: How COVID-19-Related School and Childcare Closures are Damaging Mothers’ Well-Being
Snarky & Relevant Political Bonus Read: This gem from Lyz Lenz, Dispatch from a Red State. "I don’t know who needs to hear this, but the place you are, it belongs to you, too."
We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live by Joan Didion
Bel Canto by Anne Patchett
Cowboys Are My Weakness by Pam Houston
Movies | Just sticking with one. We loved this.
TV Shows | And, again. Just one this week. Hunker home and watch it.
The Queen's Gambit | If you need convincing, sure, read this. But, spoiler alert, it contains plot points, so just watch: “The Queen’s Gambit” Is the Most Satisfying Show on Television
Twitter Follows | Wyoming women and women reporting from Wyoming.
Martha Stewart's Breaded Chicken Cutlets | Legit, these are lights out. Also: Really easy. And you can freeze them. (Which, as you know, we love.) "When you prepare crisp, golden cutlets in advance and stockpile them in your freezer, you open up all kinds of options for speedy dinners ... They go from frozen to perfection in a mere 15 minutes." They only get 3 stars on the site. But we'd give them 4.5. Maybe more.
Cauliflower Soup | Take a head of cauliflower. Pull off the leaves. Chop it up, including most of the stem. Chop a little bit of onion and saute in some olive oil. Add the cauliflower and 1 quart of chicken stock (veggie if you're veggie). Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cook about 15 min until the cauliflower is super soft. Put it in your blender. Add 1/2c of parmesan cheese and some salt. Eat. Yum.
Pumpkin Pie | Because it is that time of year. Quick note: We like this recipe from Smitten Kitchen. We don't make the praline sauce because it is too sweet for our taste. And we recommend blind baking your crust. Whipped cream, no ice cream. Enjoy!
NO. REALLY. STAY THE FUCK HOME. We're not kidding. And healthcare professionals across the state and the nation are begging you. As one very smart public health officer put it this week, "If the Greatest Generation could spend the holidays in foxholes in Ardennes, we can manage Thanksgiving by zoom."
3. We hear a couple of phrases bandied about by Wyoming politicians these days: pro-life and pro-family. We are here for some pro-life and pro-family policymaking.
Pro-life policy making should start with an aggressive effort to contain the spread of COVID-19.
The spread of coronavirus in Wyoming—and across the region—is unchecked and there is wanton and willful disregard for the lives of people around us. COVID killed 17 Wyomingites YESTERDAY. The numbers demonstrate that the infection rate in Wyoming is worse than NYC at the peak of their surge. Our hospitals are reaching capacity. Neighboring states have exceeded hospital capacity. The situation is dire. And, by taking a pro-life stance, we can keep our friends and neighbors from dying in this pandemic.
Pro-family policy should start with an acknowledgement that women can no longer be viewed as our collective social safety net.
Because, let’s be honest, that’s where we are right now. In "The Free Market Has Failed U.S. Working Parents," Caitlyn Collins writes, "Other societies agree that the public sector has a responsibility to help reconcile work and family demands."
She continues, "In the United States, by contrast, our emphasis on free markets and our fixation on personal responsibility means that we lack any coherent work-family policy to support caregiving."
Here are a few pro-family policies we can implement. RIGHT. NOW.
Paid family leave (CO just passed this resoundingly on November 3rd)
Accessible, affordable, quality childcare (OR will tax the highest net worth individuals to ensure access for all families and living wages for preschool teachers)
Living wage (FL passed a $15 minimum wage on November 3rd, even as the state voted largely for more conservative lawmakers)
These are pro-family policies.
All of these choices are well within our reach in our community, in our state, and in our nation. It will take a concerted decision to fully embrace the opportunities, to take the burden off of individual women and recognize these are systemic issues--issues of work-life justice not work-life balance--to stop with the exhausting cycle of sexism and misogyny that brings us to this crossroads again and again.
If what some elected officials *actually* mean when they say "pro-life" and "pro-family" is “pro-unborn” and “anti-woman," they should start saying that. Words matter.
The path to the future is paved with smarter and more accurate application of language and policy.