Statement of Record

CategoryEssay

Militarizing the Police

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By Roxana Robinson 

In 1990, after the fall of the Soviet Union and the Iron Curtain, the United States no longer needed a powerful physical military presence in Europe. Congress passed legislation allowing the Department of Defense to release six billion dollars’ worth of surplus military equipment to our local police departments across the country. This consignment included...

Around the Bend

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By Saskia Vogel

I think about the role smell plays in memory, touch as a communication. How will it impact the baby to have only us? (For how long?) I discipline myself to stop thinking about California as a point of arrival or departure, of...

The Blue Vial

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By Mui Poopoksakul

I found it on May 19, I told the detective.

            Coming home from the post office and waiting for the elevator, I checked our mail as usual. Nothing but a vial with blue liquid. I couldn’t be bothered with whatever free sample someone had dropped in our mailbox and chose to ignore it.

...

Something New

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By Caille Millner

A few weeks before my city issued a shelter-in-place order, I gave birth to my first child. While I was learning how to be a mother, the coronavirus pandemic was decimating economies and cleaving communities. It was disproportionately killing Black Americans and laying bare the brutal costs of the country’s collective unwillingness to invest in everything from basic...

Pain and Coping

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by Christine Henneberg

Recently an old knee injury from my twenties flared up. The knee aches every time I walk down the few steps into the garage. In bed at night, I can feel it throbbing; it distracts me from the book I’m reading. I blame it on the fact that the pool is closed and I haven’t been swimming. Instead I’ve been walking a lot—almost exclusively with the double stroller. I...

White Fantasy: Laura Ingalls Wilder, Covid, and the Myth of Self-Sufficiency

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It’s pure fantasy of course, this American myth of self-reliance. It’s also, let’s face it, unapologetically white. Much has been made of the racism in Wilder’s books. In 2018 the American Library Association removed her name from a children’s literature award due in part to her crass portrayals of indigenous peoples and people of color. Laura’s mother’s insistence that “the only good Indian is a...

Uncertainty Ever After

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By Jon Roemer

Late February/early March felt like a horror movie, the fast, almost tidy way the pandemic was unfolding and the way cable news filled an expository role. It looked like a Soderbergh split-screen concoction, like Contagion on replay from a decade ago. Until the spectacle got repetitive, the numbers got close to home, and angry people started filling my streets.

Masks and Gloves

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By Rebecca Chace

Today a man died in front of our building, or maybe he didn’t. It’s spring 2020 in Brooklyn, New York. Yesterday, the death count was only forty-six, the day before it was sixty-one. Up and down have replaced north and south on the compass. I opened our front door, masked and gloved, inhaling Pine Sol from the spray bottle we use on the door knob we share with other...

Perpetuum Mobile

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Alexander Graeff

translated by Mark Kanak

I used to complain about my long-distance relationship. I wrote heartwarming letters full of longing and “what if” speculations—once I even wrote a story titled “Empty.” That’s how I often felt after our encounters, empty. Our professions prevented us from visiting each other every weekend. Worse still: the damned job was the reason...

Rooms and Clarinets

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Clifford Thompson

Malcolm X has been on my mind lately. I’ll get to that in a moment.

In my early and mid-teens, I played the clarinet, badly. I gave it up after that, and I don’t even know where my old clarinet is. But I have another one now, given to me by a friend who found it in her apartment, left behind by a previous tenant; my friend thought of me as she herself was...

After Ginger

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Alice Stephens

Isamu Noguchi found it was easier to get himself into an internment camp than it was to get out.

Confined at home these past months due to the Coronavirus, I think often of the Japanese and Japanese Americans who were interned during World War II. 

After five years of research and writing, I had recently completed a historical fiction novel based on...

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