Return to Iowa City

This has been quite a homecoming here in Iowa City. Last night an incredible dinner cooked by and at the home of Professor Linda Bolton. The evening ended with several of Linda's students and Linda and I in a circle. Linda addressed the power of teaching. She was my student years ago when I taught at the University of Arizona, in one of the best classes I ever had in Native literature. It gets passed on. As I looked around the circle at the burning bright students I realized they were my "grand-students" and told them so. Yes they are--I must have many around the country! And I am the grand-student of many, including the teachers of N.Scott Momaday, Leslie Silko, Gene Frumkin, Nappy Napolean, John Coltrane, Karen Leialoha CarrollLeilani Sheldon....so many teachers in this life....they make a powerful matrix in each of our lives.


Health Care Standoff

Last night I wrote to my state senators, both Republican. They may not read the letters, but they need to know that not all of the constituency for whom they are responsible is in favor of their destructive stance. This standoff is dangerous. It is a stand of the rich against the poor. Revolutions are made of this. Ironically, most of the tea partiers need this healthcare, yet they've organized against Obama because of his race. We have to step carefully, and always with compassion.

People need the opportunity to buy affordable health care without being shut out because of pre conditions or because of inability to pay high premiums.

I believe race was and is a huge motivation for anti-Obama movements, but of course, not for all. We all need to be able to speak with each other. No, we shouldn't be forced to buy health care. All citizens should have access to health care. I don't have health care. The cost would take a third of my income, and I have no pre-existing conditions.