Tag Archives: Issue 11-30-2012

The Dalai Lama Comes to Cambridge

It was an unusual scene, to say the least. Scientists and academics stood in line next to young Tibetan monks. Aging spiritual seekers mingled with ambitious young Cambridge undergraduates. And they all filed, one by one, through checkpoints watched by hawk-eyed Secret Service agents with crew cuts and discreet earpieces. This unlikely group was gathered

Occupy Sandy

Sand is still being swept out of open doors down the narrow church hallway when we arrive. I walk in a narrow file with six other medical volunteers, carefully balancing the box of glucometers and other supplies on my shoulder. “Where do you want us to put the clinic?” one of us asks the wiry

Book Review: The New Jim Crow

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander (New Press, $19.95) Michelle Alexander shines a light on the underbelly of the criminal justice system in her book The New Jim Crow (2012). She is bringing to our attention the fact that there is now, as there has been for

the spirit of giving: genes, behavior, & the nature of altruism are a part of our evolutionary dna

As November’s autumn leaves abandon tree branches, exposing them to winter’s imminent onslaught, the painful vulnerability experienced by low-income individuals and families due to the ongoing recession will be amplified by the pressures of the holiday season. The materialism of the holidays drains even economically comfortable families of both energy and resources. However, for those

Another Stupid Idea

Well, winter is here again. With it comes the annual homeless census, where people go around at night and look for people on the street and in shelters, add it all up, and tell us how many homeless people are in Massachusetts. I’ve always been skeptical of it, because the count is organized by advocates,

marriage inequality, on the rocks

Opponents of same-sex marriage had won 32 state referendums in a row, but their winning streak came to a screeching halt on Election Day, 2012. Voters in Maine, Maryland, and Washington state added to the number of states where marriage equality is now the law, increasing the total to nine states and the District of

Poems by Doug Holder

Change My Breath The sardines Sliding in oil A dash of mustard A delicious hot dollop My tongue Ravished By horseradish. It dances Like a flapper Across my teeth. Now change My breath My love Before we kiss Sometimes I think All things so sweet Will inevitably stink. The Suburbs 1962 Mom a gurgling scream

Unlocking Democracy

As someone who writes and organizes around issues of imprisonment and detention, my work is often met with a certain type of resignation. Though many politically-conscious people are quick to lament our nation’s chart-topping incarceration rates, they’re justifiably overwhelmed by the complexity and magnitude of our so-called justice system. Many simply don’t know where or

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