Graham Bodie

I’ve gotten to know Graham Bodie over the past year as I’ve gotten involved as a coalition partner for The Listen First Project, a group of organizations focused on using dialogue to heal the social fabric of America. Graham is a Chief Listening Officer of Listen First Project and also a professor of integrated media communications at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Mississippi. “Swapping … Continue reading Graham Bodie

Mississippi update

Last weekend a friend texted me a photo of three statues on the back of a flatbed truck in Columbus, Mississippi. It was the start of relocating a 32-foot tall Confederate statue from in front of the Lowndes County Courthouse to a new site across town in Friendship Cemetery, where more than 2,000 Confederate soldiers are buried beside 100 or so Union soldiers. It’s interesting … Continue reading Mississippi update

Water is Life

I spent last week in northern Minnesota with a camp of Water Protectors along the Mississippi River. The Indigenous, women-led movement is currently working to stop construction of the Line 3 oil pipeline. I went, specifically because I wanted to learn more. I went because I want to get better at hearing Indigenous voices. I went because I have heard the Water Protectors called radical, … Continue reading Water is Life

Signs of the times

It was a quiet drive from Oxford to Sumner, Mississippi. Karen was busy and I drove the 70 miles by myself. I don’t think I said more than a few words all day. Mostly, I read signs. And I’m going to let the signs do most of the talking today. A sign in front of the Tallahatchie County Courthouse says: “Emmett Till Murder Trial. In … Continue reading Signs of the times

Elaine Baker

Elaine Baker grew up in Mound Bayou, Mississippi. Founded in 1887 by former slaves, Mound Bayou is the oldest self-governing all-black municipality in the United States. Elaine grew up in an era of segregation, with “white only” and “black only” signs in neighboring communities, though she didn’t experience day-to-day racism in Mound Bayou. She learned that her value and worth were not determined by others. … Continue reading Elaine Baker