Interdependent Web: Don't preach the palatable King, spark joy, healthcare reality, erosion of trust

Interdependent Web: Don't preach the palatable King, spark joy, healthcare reality, erosion of trust

A weekly roundup of blogs and other user-generated web content about Unitarian Universalism


Don’t preach the palatable King

In the second of two posts about Martin Luther King, Jr. Sunday, Kim Hampton urges her white minister friends not to “preach the palatable King.”

On January 20, 2019, in some states, Dr. Martin Luther King has to share the day with Robert E. Lee.

And people wonder why “race relations” are the way they are. . . .

Part of the reason the United States is in the position it’s in is because too many people want to believe that our past is dead. Or, more precisely, that our past isn’t our past. That white supremacy is not a feature of our system, but just a bug. (East of Midnight, 1.16.19)

Tony Lorenzen writes, “Let’s stop talking about Dr. King and talk more about the things he talked about.”

Let’s talk about holding a government hostage in order to build a racist wall, let’s talk about medicare for all, a guaranteed basic income, or as Kim Hampton suggests: lynching and the fact that 2019 is the 100th anniversary of the Red Summer and the 400th anniversary of the first enslaved Africans arriving in North America. Or let’s talk about the whitewashing itself. How we whitewash the radical, the uncomfortable, and the revolutionary right out of this MLK holiday. No more watery whitewash, but instead the purifying fire of real history, the real Dr. King, and real issues. (Sunflower Chalice, 1.15.19)

Spark joy

The new Netflix show, Tidying Up With Marie Kondo, sparked not just joy, but also impassioned conversation. (Facebook, 1.14.19)

John Beckett weighed in against minimalism, and in favor of keeping his beloved books.

There is value in reducing clutter, in getting rid of things you don’t use – and in not buying more things you don’t need. But for me, books represent wealth, and books bring me joy. (Under the Ancient Oaks, 1.15.19)

Aaron White created a list of seven tips for a spiritual reset in 2019, including a commitment to remaining open.

The task of building a more meaningful life is a never-ending one. Being a human being is challenging, and none of us does it perfectly. Whatever you’re trying to accomplish this year, I hope you give yourself and others a great deal of grace along the way. None of us is ever finished, and that can be wonderful news. (Possibility Conspiracy, 1.12.19)

Healthcare reality

After a harrowing exploration of price gouging in a prescription cancer drug that keeps his wife alive, Doug Muder concludes that “the profit motive is not serving us in health care.”

Personally, I’d rather take my chances with government bureaucrats. People in the government may be insulated from market forces, but often they identify with the mission of their office. For example, I recently had to change my drivers’ license from New Hampshire to Massachusetts. I ran into all sorts of unexpected bureaucratic problems; for some reason, none of my documents were the exact ones the system was looking for. Through it all, though, the clerk I was dealing with did her best to guide me through the labyrinth. In her mind, she was there to help people.

That’s not the impression Deb got from SilverScript. The company isn’t trying to provide healthcare or help its customers find ways to pay for it; it’s trying to make as much money off of them as it can. The grievance department isn’t there to respond to customers’ legitimate grievances, it’s there to mollify and divert people who have been conned by the company’s deceptive practices. The individuals who work there are probably no worse than the rest of us, so they can’t identify with that mission. Instead, they sink into their scripts. (The Weekly Sift, 1.14.19)

Erosion of trust

Dan Harper analyzes the data related to the erosion of trust in clergy ethics and honesty.

I suspect . . . that the decline in the perception of clergy honesty is linked to a wider decline in trust of organized religion — a decline that in many cases is deserved. Lay leaders and clergy, regardless of our polity, need to be scrupulously careful about maintaining good governance practices that are transparent and that strengthen accountability; and when ethical violations arise, we need to address them quickly and transparently. (Yet Another Unitarian Universalist, 1.11.19)