A very interesting article from THE ATLANTIC that is getting a lot of buzz:
EIGHTEEN MONTHS INTO my job as the first woman director of policy planning at the State Department, a foreign-policy dream job that traces its origins back to George Kennan, I found myself in New York, at the United Nationsâ€™ annual assemblage of every foreign minister and head of state in the world. On a Wednesday evening, President and Mrs. Obama hosted a glamorous reception at the American Museum of Natural History. I sipped champagne, greeted foreign dignitaries, and mingled. But I could not stop thinking about my 14-year-old son, who had started eighth grade three weeks earlier and was already resuming what had become his pattern of skipping homework, disrupting classes, failing math, and tuning out any adult who tried to reach him. Over the summer, we had barely spoken to each otherâ€”or, more accurately, he had barely spoken to me. And the previous spring I had received several urgent phone callsâ€”invariably on the day of an important meetingâ€”that required me to take the first train from Washington, D.C., where I worked, back to Princeton, New Jersey, where he lived. My husband, who has always done everything possible to support my career, took care of him and his 12-year-old brother during the week; outside of those midweek emergencies, I came home only on weekends.
As the evening wore on, I ran into a colleague who held a senior position in the White House. She has two sons exactly my sonsâ€™ ages, but she had chosen to move them from California to D.C. when she got her job, which meant her husband commuted back to California regularly. I told her how difficult I was finding it to be away from my son when he clearly needed me. Then I said, â€œWhen this is over, Iâ€™m going to write an op-ed titled â€˜Women Canâ€™t Have It All.â€™â€
She was horrified. â€œYou canâ€™t write that,â€ she said….[Rest of article]
This is what I saw through my camera lens: Pastor Randy â€œMackâ€ Wolford, tossing and turning on the couch in his mother-in-lawâ€™s West Virginia trailer, suffering from the pain of a rattlesnake bite he had received earlier in the day. Parishioners surrounding him in prayer in the stifling heat. His mother stroking his feet, her expression a mixture of concern, sorrow and, eventually, acceptance: This is how her eldest son â€” a legend in the local Pentecostal serpent-handling community â€” would die.
Camera in hand, I watched as the man Iâ€™d photographed and gotten to know over the past year writhed, turned pale and slipped away, a victim of his unwavering faith, but also a testament to it. A family member called paramedics when Mack finally allowed it, but it was too late. Mack Wolford drew his final, labored breaths late Sunday night. He was 44…[Rest of article]
THE FIRST TIME THAT principal Jim Sporleder tried the New Approach to Student Discipline at Lincoln High School in Walla Walla, WA, he was blown away. Because it worked. In fact, it worked so well that he never went back to the Old Approach to Student Discipline. This is how it went down:
A student blows up at a teacher, drops the F-bomb. The usual approach at Lincoln â€“ and, safe to say, at most high schools in this country â€“ is automatic suspension. Instead, Sporleder sits the kid down and says quietly:
â€œWow. Are you OK? This doesnâ€™t sound like you. Whatâ€™s going on?â€ He gets even more specific: â€œYou really looked stressed. On a scale of 1-10, where are you with your anger?â€ [Rest of article]