November Flashbacks

Once a month I’m doing flash­backs to past eras in my blog. 

One Year Ago: November 2016

A year ago the shock to the sys­tem was Trump’s elec­tion. One reac­tion of mine was a promise to blog more; I set up the sys­tem but I’m still not as fric­tion­less about it as I’d like. 

Wak­ing Up to Pres­i­dent Trump: We do not get to choose our era or the chal­lenges it throws at us. Only some­one with his­tor­i­cal amne­sia would say this is unprece­dent­ed in our his­to­ry. The enslave­ment of mil­lions and the geno­cide of mil­lions more are dark stains indeli­bly soaked into the very found­ing of the nation. But much will change, par­tic­u­lar­ly our naiv­i­ty and false opti­mism in an inevitable for­ward progress of our nation­al story. 

Five Years Ago: November 2012

Five years ago I wrote about how I had been blog­ging for fif­teen years. Do the math: it’s now 20 frig­ging years since I start­ed blogging.

Fif­teen Years of Blog­ging: I keep double-checking the math but it keeps adding up. In Novem­ber 1997 I added a fea­ture to my two-year-old peace web­site. I called this new enti­ty Non­vi­o­lence Web Upfront and updat­ed it week­ly with orig­i­nal fea­tures and curat­ed links to the best online paci­fist writ­ing. I wrote a ret­ro­spec­tive of the “ear­ly blog­ging days” in 2005 that talks about how it came about and gives some con­text about the proto-blogs hap­pen­ing back in 1997. 

Ten Years Ago: November 2007

Free­lanc­ing and work­ing the overnight shift at Shoprite, I won­dered if my Quak­er­ness was hope­less­ly use­less to my new circumstances.

Who are we part one (just what pam­phlet do I give the tat­tooed ex-con?): I love the fel­low who gave the mes­sage and I appre­ci­at­ed his min­istry. But the whole time I won­dered how this would sound to peo­ple I know now, like the friend­ly but hot-tempered Puer­to Rican ex-con less than a year out of a eight-year stint in fed­er­al prison, now work­ing two eight hour shifts at almost-minimum wage jobs and try­ing to stay out of trou­ble. How does the the­o­ry of our the­ol­o­gy fit into a code of con­duct that doesn’t start off assum­ing mid­dle class norms. 

Twenty Years Ago: November 1997

Four years before 9/11, I was ask­ing how we could break the cycle of terrorism.

How Come the U.S. Trains All the Ter­ror­ists?: It would seem a sim­ple case of U.S. mil­i­tarism com­ing home to roost, but it is not so sim­ple and it is not uncom­mon. Fol­low most trails of ter­ror­ism and you’ll find Unit­ed States gov­ern­ment fund­ing some­where in the recent past.