for Hispanic Heritage Month I wanted to shine a light in a dark spot and I’m grateful that my husband let me write his story to help do that. I hope you’ll read and share.
“My husband, who is also Hispanic, has worked in manufacturing for over 25 years. He started in accounts receivable and then moved to operations, working first on a manufacturing line. He’s encountered bigotry and racism while forging his own path to upper management. One of his early supervisors thought it was cute to call him “spicktacular,” and she honestly believed she was paying him a compliment. Another manager questioned my husband’s motives when he helped a Spanish-speaking hourly worker write an incident report in English for human resources.
“Now my husband is the plant manager of a local auto manufacturing plant. He is also the only nonwhite manager at his factory. Recently, my husband came home from work with quite a different story. A Hispanic hourly worker approached him to say that because of him, she has an example for her teenage son. She tells her son, “No nomas somos trabajadores.” Which means, “We are not just workers.”
“Workplace representation matters. It not only matters for aspirational employees, but a study from McKinsey and Co. also found that diverse businesses enjoy increased profits as well as better employee engagement, access to talent and consumer insight.”
Read the full column below.
Where Are the Hispanic Executives? Why Representation and Mentoring Matter, by Bonnie Jean Feldkamp
My husband, who is also Hispanic, has worked in manufacturing for over 25 years. He started in accounts receivable and then moved to operations, working first on a manufacturing line.
“Last week, a Washington mom made news by getting kicked out of a restaurant for breastfeeding her infant son. Women need support, not judgement, and certainly not shame when feeding their babies. The restaurant owner made a bad situation worse when responding to the family’s online review, “Be like decent people not like animals, there are places for everything and this place is not to breastfeed your children.”
“The science supports that “breast is best,” but what we don’t talk about is that the most common deterrent from breastfeeding is lack of support.”
Read the full column below
Breastfeeding Moms Need Support to Succeed, by Bonnie Jean Feldkamp
Last week, a Washington mom made news by getting kicked out of a restaurant for breastfeeding her infant son. Women need support, not judgement, and certainly not shame when feeding their babies.
“We like to talk about “getting back to normal” which feels like a comfy old shoe. On the other hand, a “new normal” was thrust upon us, born from necessity with masks, sanitizer and social distancing. However, the pandemic has carried on long enough that I no longer crave getting back to some pre-COVID-19 before times “normal.” Something in me has crossed over.
“I want more from life.
“Humanity is in a collective existential crisis.
“Our mortality is being showcased, and we’re all coping in real time in our own way. Whether that’s in denial, in faith, through science or ritual, we are all taking a hard look at what it means to live.”
Read the whole column at the link below.
The Disruption This World Needs
Fall always brings me nostalgia. My best childhood memories are of marching band, autumn leaves and Halloween.
“My daughter was a good student with a part-time job and friends in the marching band. I knew she didn’t like school, but what choice did we have? We had to get her through it. She cried each day on the drive to school. I hounded her about personal hygiene and tried to understand what was going on, but I just didn’t. I’ve never experienced depression, and because of that, I didn’t recognize when she was in mental health trouble.”
Mental Health Matters More Than Adolescent Milestones, by
My daughter was a junior in high school when her therapist called me into her office. I bounced my toddler on my knee and tried to absorb what the therapist was saying.
“When asked what drove her to see it through, she said that she wanted to be an American citizen like her children and husband. She wanted to show them she could do it and make her family proud. Manuela also very much wanted the right to vote. On July 14, 2017, she was sworn in as an American citizen.
“The opposition to refugees and immigrants is strong, but it is the most universal story we share as Americans. It should be the common ground that unites us.”
Click belw to read the full column
Immigration Is our Universal American Story, by
Last week, a federal judge in Houston ruled that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy was
“I did not attend my high school graduation. My family had a lot on its shoulders. My dad and stepmom were going through a divorce. I was told the Friday before my senior prom that it was over.
Graduation photos are all over my social media feed, and even The New York Times featured prom photos on their front page. High school graduation is no doubt a rite of passage and a major transition in life. But there was no point in pomp and circumstance for me. It would seem my future was not so bright anyways. I was a horrible student. Don’t get me wrong, I loved to learn, I just didn’t learn well in a classroom. For others, college would be the next logical step, but I barely had the grades to graduate high school.
I clung to the words of Chuck Keller, my junior year English teacher. He had told me, “Your success in high school does not determine your success in life.”
I really enjoyed this conversation with Julian Rubinstein and Terrance Roberts. Julian’s new book The Holly which focuses on Terrance’s story is a great read that manages to shine a light on how local media failed Northeast Denver. The interview recording is linked below. I hope you’ll watch.
I also reviewed this book for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and that review is linked below the recording. The book is worth the read.
Almost dead in Denver
In ‘The Holly,’ journalist Julian Rubinstein tells the story of how one Denver neighborhood dealt with gangs, drugs and gentrification.
“I recently moved back to my hometown of Fort Thomas, Kentucky, located just across the river from Cincinnati, Ohio. I promised my husband, who’s Hispanic, that it is more progressive and more diverse than when I was growing up. I also sold him on the fact that it is one of the top school districts in the state. But, as I sat in a community meeting in our local high school auditorium and listened to my fellow community members make public statements about a proposed elective course on social equity, I worried that I was wrong.
Many of the comments at the microphone were in favor of teaching social equity. Some shared a personal story to illustrate why it’s important to them. But those who spoke out against the course hammered home the same sound bite that’s been echoing across the country as states seek to ban critical race theory (CRT) from public education.”
Matt Bertasso, the Highlands High School outgoing principal, said the social equity class in Fort Thomas was tabled because “It did not pass the neutrality test.” But our sanitized stories of America don’t pass the neutrality test either. Perhaps our curriculum should start by being honest.
“Both driving and public transportation are heavily subsidized, but drivers are either unaware of that or OK with government support of personal transport. People get upset when states start talking about toll roads and bridges. Ironically, these tend to be the same people who think public transit should be self-sustaining. It’s not, and it never has been.”
Click Below to Read the Full Column
Paying for Roads in an Electric World, by
Orange barrels in a construction zone or a pothole in the street are my only road maintenance reminders. I usually curse the bump in the road and go about my day.