Olympia Then and Now

By Philippe Magnier (French, 1647-1715) Copy of the celebrated Uffizi Wrestlers, stored in the Galleria degli Uffizi in Florence, Italy. Marble, 1684–1688. The statue was first installed in the park of Versailles, then transferred in 1689 to the park of Marly and in 1797 to the Tuileries Gardens. Part 1/11 of Olympia, by Leni Riefenstahl, documenting … Continue reading

“Roadkill” – a Bus Ride to Human Trafficking

I’ve received a lot of invitations to plays about human trafficking. At first, I’d go. I wanted to support the organizations fighting this problem and see how they use theater to raise awareness. But, I have to be honest, many of them felt contrived at best. Most seemed to glory in the suffering, a la … Continue reading

One Million Bones

This past weekend thousands of volunteers, dressed in white, laid out one million bones on the National Mall as part of the One Million Bones project. Students, artists, activist groups, and other organizations from around the world crafted the bones. Each bone represented victims of genocide and mass violence. The event was solemn… But also … Continue reading

We Already Know How to Help These Women

I want to talk today about something difficult to discuss. You don’t hear about it in the news very often, likely because it affects people the West commonly ignores, and might be too overwhelming for the typical 24/7 news cycle. The problem is a medical one: fistula, or when an abnormal tract forms between two … Continue reading

Bangladesh and What Brings the Guilt Clouds

Last Friday I heard a brief exchange on The Diane Rehm Show’s Friday news roundup about the recent factory collapse/fire in Bangladesh in which at least 381 people have been confirmed killed. Susan Page of US Today stood in for Diane Rehm and interviewed, among others, James Kitfield of National Journal. Page asked Kitfield, “Do … Continue reading

Why Would Uganda Kill the Gays?

An infamous piece of legislation still looms in Uganda – the “Kill the Gays” bill, which would punish homosexuality with the death penalty. Homosexuality is already illegal in Uganda, but that law is rarely if ever enforced. Ugandan public sentiment on sexuality ranges across all corners of the spectrum. So if there’s already a law … Continue reading

A Better Option for the Impoverished Farmer

The fair trade movement has grown exponentially in recent years thanks to large corporate partnerships and more global awareness. It’s arguably made a difference for many tradespeople on whom wealthy countries depend. But it’s not the only option out there if you’re interested in ethical consumerism – there are alternatives to fair trade that can … Continue reading

Where Have All the Peace Activists Gone?

On Sunday I attended the Inaugural Peace Ball, where activists from across the country gathered to celebrate successes in the fight for peace and refocus their energies on areas that still need work. Ralph Nader was one of the keynote speakers. In a brief but passionate address, he discussed one of the key issues in … Continue reading

Inaugural Peace Ball

Just a quick heads up that I’ll be covering the Inaugural Peace Ball live tonight from Arena Stage at The Mead Center For American Theater here in DC. The event, which celebrates recent campaigns for peace while also reflecting and refocusing on the many efforts still to be done, will include guests Ralph Nader (you … Continue reading

“Happy Halloween” as a Journey

It’s that time of year again: the time of year when everyone eats a ton of crappy, cheap candy and brags about it. And it’s the time of year I become tempted by cynicism. A few years ago, I found out much of our chocolate has a connection to human trafficking in West Africa. It … Continue reading

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