I’m Queer. Please Pass the Peas?

By Erika Grumet   A few weeks ago, a thirteen year old I know showed up at my house wearing a t-shirt that read:“Bisexual Trash Panda.” Even before I was a parent, I knew adolescent sexuality pretty well–years of teaching about HIV and STIs, contraception and LGBTQ101 gave me a lens into that topic longContinue reading “I’m Queer. Please Pass the Peas?”

What it Means to Ban a Book

“Censorship reflects a society’s lack of confidence in itself.” Potter Stewart, Associate Justice, US Supreme Court By Erika Grumet The only book my parents ever took away from me was Catcher in the Rye. There are a lot of reasons someone might want to take that book away from a child, but none of thoseContinue reading “What it Means to Ban a Book”

Teaching my Kid about September 11

By Erika Grumet Editor’s Note: Readers of The Ivory Tower Boiler Room know that on Monday, we typically publish our Big Think, an essay giving a perspective on the month’s topic. But then in the days leading up to this important anniversary, Erika wrote the following and we decided just to go with it. SometimesContinue reading “Teaching my Kid about September 11”

We Dance to the Rhythm of 49 Heartbeats: The Pulse Massacre 5 Years Later

By Erika Grumet In December of 2012, the day after my youngest child turned 3, on what had begun as a typical Friday (with a little extra crankiness because there had been an extended evening of celebrations the night before) the Facebook News Network broke a story about a shooting at an elementary school inContinue reading “We Dance to the Rhythm of 49 Heartbeats: The Pulse Massacre 5 Years Later”

A Mother’s Pride

By Tiffany Sowa I’ve been thinking a lot about my mother over the Memorial Day weekend, because it’s the first time since her passing that I didn’t go home to put flowers on her grave, and I was feeling awfully bad about that. She never missed a cemetery-decorating holiday, and often wept quietly over herContinue reading “A Mother’s Pride”

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