Unheralded

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — We Need To Refocus

You know, local newspapers and electronic media do a pretty good job of keeping us informed on local events. On national events, not so much. Take, for instance, the case of Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, a Democrat. He is accused of, has admitted to and then disavowed being in a picture in the 1984 yearbook of Eastern Virginia Medical School. …


Unheralded

TIM MADIGAN: Anything Mentionable — As We Grapple With Race, A Story Worth Retelling

In 2001, I published a book called “The Burning: Massacre, Destruction and the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921.” Several months later, I decided that if I could poke around in the terrible race history of another city, I was obligated to do the same in my own, Fort Worth, Texas. My 2002 series in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram was titled …


PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — Smirk Seen ‘Round The World

It is the smirk that haunts me. That self-satisfied, smug, arrogant look of condescension and feeling of superiority, for no reason other than the fact that he is privileged white boy wearing a red hat that claims that he wants to “Make America Great Again.” The story of Nathan Phillips, the Vietnam veteran and Omaha elder who chose to stand …

JIM FUGLIE: View From The Prairie — Election 2018: Racists 1, Potheads 0

A couple final (?) thoughts on the Nov. 6 election in North Dakota. * * * * * Did racism play a role in the 2018 North Dakota election? As I’ve said repeatedly over the past few months, North Dakota Democrats needed to focus ALL their messaging opportunities on two topics: Trump’s trade wars and Republicans trying to take away health …

RON SCHALOW: Politics Of Race And Fear Gave Cramer The Win

There were plenty of reasons that would provoke a normal North Dakotan to vote for the bigoted puffy suit of peacock feathers known as Kevin Cramer over the impossibly more competent, intelligent and productive Heidi Heitkamp. Mainly it was the letter behind Heitkamp’s name that was a provocation. Cramer had no record, so he relied on the letter “T” for …

TIM MADIGAN: Anything Mentionable — Roland Martin Remembers

Many years ago, Roland Martin and I were young reporters at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Roland quickly went on to become, well, Roland Martin, the ubiquitous personality on national television and radio, a longtime fixture of Sunday morning network talk shows. But Roland clearly remembers one part of our brief acquaintance. He and I had several important discussions about race …

PAM COSTAIN: You Wooed Me Back, You Broke My Heart, I Still Love You, North Dakota

After a 40-year hiatus, the stark beauty of North Dakota captured my heart and drew me home. I was awestruck by the vast ineffable horizons, the wheat and sunflowers undulating in the wind and the other-worldly color of the Badlands and buttes. Returning to my roots, I remembered why I loved the landscape, the land itself and the powerful Missouri …

RON SCHALOW: The Land With Two Brains

If Donald Trump had walked into a Minot working man’s bar before he became a fancy pants, popular stream of consciousness screamer, he would have ended up in the dumpster, with appropriate discoloration, in under 30 minutes. No self-respecting patron of the bar arts in the Magic City, would suffer a loudmouth, self-aggrandizing, lying dick for very long. Experienced drinkers …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — Discrimination Is Alive In America

In the era of Trump, you don’t have to wonder about racial discrimination and profiling. It’s out of the closet and on full display. Native Americans (you know, the real Americans we somehow called Indians) were denigrated and their lands and culture stolen and just about destroyed by the Palefaces — the good old white guys! The racists are back …

RON SCHALOW: Don’t Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor Or Anyone Huddled

I don’t like to brag, but I’m not a white supremacist. I’m a pale pinkish beige, touch of gray, slight kale-green hue supremacist. Gray geese, they call the two of us in the press, although, honestly, they don’t pay any attention. Effing chromos, otherwise. Me, or I, except after c, and the other bloke in the mookie genus, Roy, are …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — The Right To Be Silent

In this country, we have the right to remain silent. But there are times where we also have the duty to speak out. We now live in a time when to remain silent is an act of cowardice, racism and bigotry. I’m not going to dignify this POTUS by quoting his recent disgusting statement referencing the entire African continent. He …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — You Pray … I’ll Vote

Given the Texas church massacre that was just committed by a man named Kelley … if you use the same rhetoric as the president, then all white Irishmen should be banned from this country. Of course, banning the Irish is an insane idea. But it’s no more insane than banning anyone else because their skin color, religion or place of …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — Now’s The Time To Speak Without Fear

Many don’t have the desire nor the time to keep up with to the national news on the life and times of the associates of Donald J. Trump. If you’re not interested, that’s fine … but if you are, you can read the entire federal complaint against Paul J. Manafort Jr., and Richard W. Gates III at https://www.justice.gov/file/1007271/download. I have …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — Me Too?

There has been quite a movement across this nation to focus on demeaning and horrible things happening to women in this country. To be sure, the stories on the national stage deserve the attention they are receiving. Let’s put the brakes on the current outcry, however. Let’s study the issues and do more than sensationalize and talk. Khizr Khan, an …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — When Media Are Shut Out, So Are The People

Scott Pruitt, newly appointed EPA administrator, comes to North Dakota for the first time. He is accompanied by Sen. John Hoeven, Rep. Kevin Cramer and Gov. Doug Burgum. Meetings are held on the publicly owned campuses of North Dakota State University and the University of North Dakota, and the presidents of each institution are in attendance. In Fargo, the media …

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Finding The Courage To Speak Out

This is my father (right), who was in the U.S. Army during World War II, the Korean Conflict and the Vietnam War.  As an 18-year-old, he got on the ship, the Queen Elizabeth, and shipped to England, where he fought against the Nazis and was on the beaches of Normandy. When I wonder if I have the courage to speak …

NATASHA THOMAS: Challenging Conversation Corners — Diversity Is Not A Destination

It’s time to talk about the “woke ladder.” The term “woke” goes way back, originally coined in the black community and now used widely to describe an awakened state of being, an awareness of systems at work behind closed doors that the less “enlightened” may not notice or acknowledge. In today’s call-out culture, verbal sparring between political and ideological opposites is …

CLAY JENKINSON: Anger And Hypocrisy

I find it interesting that for eight years the anti-Obama legions kept their eyes open at all times for signs that Barack Obama was “an angry black man.” If at any time, he showed the slightest impatience or raised his voice above a certain level, or spoke in something that could be thought to resemble black street English, the conservative …

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — Living With A Trump Presidency

I knew he would win. I’ve known it since last fall when I heard two stories on NPR in the same week. One was on the use of language in the power of persuasion — a rhetorical feat Trump has mastered. The other story focused on how people turn to authoritative power when they are uncertain or scared. After hearing those …

RON SCHALOW: I’m Not Ready For Unity

“I’m not ready, yet, Orv,” groans Stanley. Orville sighs. “Everybody dies, Stan. We’ve been over this. Get over it.” “No, it’s not that. I’m ready to bite the dust at the drop of hat. Wear shirts, wash shirts. It’s getting a bit monotonous. Who drops their hat, anyway? And what type of a hat does it have to be? I …

NATASHA THOMAS: Challenging Conversation Corners — Power, In The Age Of DAPL, BLM And The 2016 Election

There’s a lot of extreme emotion in the air this week. It’s tangible. I see it across my social media feeds and dripping between words spoken and unspoken at home, work and play. Most people I know, myself included, are in a constant state of vacillation between disappointment, rage, despair, determination and just plain old fatigue. Other people are rejoicing, …

NATASHA THOMAS: Challenging Conversation Corners — New Life, New Challenges

It’s been some time since my last post on Unheralded. There are a few reasons for this: The start of the fall semester is always a busy time, especially since it follows a summer PhD residency for me, the second — of three — of which I completed just this past July.  But ultimately, the heaviest hitting contributing to my …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — There Are More Horses’ Behinds Than There Are Horses

In February 1999, the U.S. Department of Justice published a report that I have never before seen. Among its revelations: American Indians experience per capita rates of violence that are more than twice those of the U.S. resident population as a whole. In the category of murder, blacks lead the way by a vast number, followed by Native Americans and …

Tony J Bender: That’s Life — Are We Talking Yet?

Hate devours everything around it and, eventually, the haters, too. Twelve white officers down in Dallas. Five dead. Two more black men dead at the hands of the police. Are we talking, yet? Sure, we are. Past each other, seeing everything in black and white, when it’s much more complicated than that. For a start, let’s stop patting ourselves on …

TOM COYNE: Back In Circulation — Empathy And Respect Are Lost Virtues

I woke up today feeling sad and depressed. An aging, white guy nearing retirement, I probably don’t deserve to feel this way. After all, I’ve had the tremendous fortune of living in a free and powerful country. We weren’t rich, but our family had enough money to live in a relatively safe neighborhood, I attended a good school and eventually …

TIM MADIGAN: Anything Mentionable — Another Turning Point

Memories after what I hope will be a turning point week for our country. The first from 1996, when I moved into a Fort Worth, Texas, nursing home to write about the lives of the people there. As part of my daily ritual, I went from room to room, saying good morning to my new neighbors. With two exceptions. It …

TIM MADIGAN: Anything Mentionable — Remembering Slocum, Texas, Massacre

I’m not proud to say that before I began to research my book on the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921, I knew woefully little about true black history. My 2001 book was called “The Burning,” and that’s what it was in Tulsa, mobs of whites burning down a prosperous black community, killing 300 in an act of genocide. But Tulsa …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — Hatemongers Draw Venom From Media Coverage

I got out of bed Sunday morning and absolutely knew what I was going to write this week. Then I picked up The Forum (that’s Fargo’s paper, in case you didn’t know) and saw an article by Robin Huebner that sent me off focus. The article was on Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota and refugee settlement. It also focused …

NATASHA THOMAS: Challenging Conversation Corners — Over, Down And Around: The Challenge Of ‘Playing’ Real Life

I have been quiet for quite a while. Online at least. Every once in a while, I like to pull back from posting or commenting on hot-button issues on the Internet just to watch people’s behavior. By doing this, I get a sense of what the most common arguments are, which of them seems to have the most staying power …

TIM MADIGAN: Anything Mentionable — It’s Time To Look Back, Really Look Back

Watching the images from Baltimore and remembering, and certainly not for the first time in these troubled last few years, a spring night in Tulsa, Okla., more than a decade ago, when Oklahoma State Rep. Don Ross and I shared dinner at a quiet Chinese restaurant. I was in Tulsa to research a newspaper story about the Tulsa Race Riot …

JEFF TIEDEMAN: Straight From The Vest — Let’s Put A Stop To Racism And Other Forms Of Discrimination

Growing up in the small northwestern Minnesota town of Crookston, I didn’t have very much interaction with minorities. In sixth grade, the only year I attended public school, Angela Mendez was in my class.  I knew her older brother, Ruben, and a younger brother, Vincent. When I was in high school, one of my friends was Andy Villegas. Both the …