Ho ho, hey, hey, the Electoral College is here to stay

One would have thought that after the longest presidential campaign in U.S. history, we would all be sick of talking about Nov. 8. But we’re not. Our president keeps handing out maps, rarely missing an opportunity to tell people about how bigly he won. Meanwhile, on the left, those who were with her then are still with her, as if she’s a sort of semidivine phoenix who’s going to rise from the ashes and place them all at her right hand as a sign of gratitude for their devotion and fervor.

“If only we had a popular vote!” they lament.

http://blog.bmwooddell.com/wp-admin/post-new.php”Our elections

A parable

There once was a small town. It wasn’t a special town to the naked eye. Like most towns its size, it had a friendly welcome sign along the highway and a lovely park in the town square. Its schools were pretty good, save for the knuckleheads who’d rather play ball than do their homework.

But upon closer inspection, this town was a little different. Its inhabitants prided themselves on their awareness of various issues in their town, their state and their nation. The protested at the right times. They voted for the right candidates. They consumed and boycotted the right things.


I dropped a dollar bill the other day. I was paying for lunch at work, and it slipped out of my hand as the cashier was reaching for it. It was my fault, the bill’s dropping to the floor. It landed between the cashier’s feet and the table on which the register was placed, so I knelt down and picked it up as I apologized.

The remarkable thing about this story isn’t my actions, it’s the cashier’s. From the moment the bill started falling until the point at which it was in the register, she apologized, too. She said “sorry” too

What do we do?

It was midway through watching the USA-Mexico match that my friend Nina asked me a question: “Do you think we live in a bubble?” said Nina, a European-Japanese-descent born-and-raised American. Her trilingual Colombian husband was in the other room playing with their beautifully multiethnic baby boy and talking to a Mexican-descent mutual friend.

I didn’t need to answer—that tableau spoke for itself. The last time a group at my house was whites-only was when my parents stayed the weekend, and that’s only after Armando had left. Nina, a nurse, and I, a teacher, spend each day surrounded by people of every

Maybe you shouldn’ta

I woke up at 4:30 this morning because the steroid shot I got yesterday to fight a nasty cold told me I should. Well, that and I’m still not adjusted to CST. I looked at my iPhone and saw the headline I knew (and feared) in my gut as long as a year ago that I’d see: Donald Trump is our president-elect. In light of this, I offer a debrief. It’s not reactionary (It’s pretty reactionary.), as I, unlike, apparently, a large number of Americans, have seen Trump as a legitimate contender for the 1600 for a while now. But

The Lochte-Douglas debate

As an avid Olympics fan, I’ve had every media device in my possession tuned to Rio for nearly two weeks. And despite all the (typically) negative predictions, the 2016 Games have been pretty problem-free. Which is why, in particularly America-in-2016 fashion, we’ve had to invent scandals to distract us from the fact that the United States is having one of its best Olympics in history.

The outrages-of-choice this year have chiefly concerned two athletes: gymnastics Gabby Douglas and swimmer Ryan Lochte. For those who have forgotten, a recap: Douglas’ hairstyle bothered some people, and she didn’t put her hand on her

White guilt, white rage

It was May, and my student assistant was deciding whether to order graduation announcements.

“Send some to your white friends,” I told him.

He looked at me, confused. I proceeded to explain that white, middle-class people have a compulsion for replying to invitations with either attendance or money (and usually the latter, as we consider it to be a fully acceptable replacement for the former). Even if he doesn’t know the person, I said, he’ll probably get $10. He laughed and, unfortunately for his wallet, didn’t heed my advice.

Growing up a middle-class, straight, white male, I’ve seen white guilt in action, and

After Orlando: a Christian’s lament

“I decided to go because I want to show love to the LGBT community in Orlando.”

The friend who texted me this earlier tonight is one of the most compassionate and sacrificially loving men I’ve ever known. He’s also a Christian. He’s also a little uneasy about people’s knowing that, especially in Orlando.

I feel his pain. After the disgusting comments made by Christian pastors and preachers following the Pulse attack, I’ve not exactly wearing my religious identity on my sleeve, either. I haven’t for a long time. Orlando is just the most recent incident after which certain Christians have made total

Trump, Jesus, Godwin, Hitler and crying wolf

I’d avoided writing this until now because of my fervent belief that the wall of separation between church and state benefits both, as well as my opinion that Adolf Hitler—evil as he was—has unfairly become the go-to guy for online hyperbole, especially among those who misunderstand history, fascism and political theory and who also happen to lack a thesaurus. (Wikipedia’s entry on Godwin’s law is helpful here.)

The problem with Godwin’s law—with everything and everyone bad (read: with which we disagree) being Hitler—is that it amounts to crying wolf. Obama wants to put sensible restrictions on guns? Guns in Jewish hands

2016: Year of big plans

“Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men’s blood and probably themselves will not be realized. Make big plans; aim high in hope and work, remembering that a noble, logical diagram once recorded will never die, but long after we are gone be a living thing, asserting itself with ever-growing insistency. Remember that our sons and our grandsons are going to do things that would stagger us. Let your watchword be order and your beacon beauty.”

Daniel Burnham, chief architect, 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition