Prairie UU Society, 2010 Whenona Drive, Madison WI 53711–4843
(608) 271-8218 firstname.lastname@example.org
Located off the south frontage road (West Beltline Hwy Rd.) near the Seminole Hwy exit.
President: Mike Briggs; (608) 835–0914 Editor: Dan Proud, email@example.com; (608) 661–0776
Sunday, July 11
10 a.m. “Nothing Left to Lose: The Life and Times of Janis Joplin” presented by Susan Urban.
Sunday, July 11–Sunday, July 18
Prairie volunteers with the Interfaith Hospitality Network
Saturday, July 17
9 a.m. Work Party at Prairie.
Sunday, July 18
10 a.m. “Pledging Allegiance” presented by the Rev. Sarah Oelberg.
11:45 a.m. Book Club meets at Prairie to discuss Reading Lolita in Tehran, by Azar Nafisi.
Sunday, July 25
10 a.m. "Same-sex marriage: a Unitarian-Universalist perspective” presented by Mike and Norma Briggs.
Tuesday, July 27
5:00 a.m. Prairie cooks breakfast at Men's Drop-In Shelter at Grace Episcopal Church
Sunday, August 1
10 a.m. Four-Congregation Joint Service, Sauk City
Saturday, August 7
Fundraiser Trip to the Chicago Field
Friday–Sunday, September 17–19
Annual Retreat, at Bethel Horizons
= Details follow in this issue.
This service will explore, from a Unitarian Universalist viewpoint, the musical and cultural legacy that this remarkable woman left for us.
is a Unitarian Universalist songwriter and singer. In 1987, she
began creating services for her then home congregation, Second
Unitarian Church of Chicago. In 1997, Susan started to present
services for other UU congregations on a regular basis, and is now
what might be called a "UU circuit rider." She is a member
Sunday, July 18
The program talk "Pledging Allegiance" will be given by the Rev. Sarah Oelberg. Summer is the time of festivals and celebrations. Many are meant to be patriotic. The Milwaukee festival board has decided all should include a "Christian element" in order to draw more people. We find ourselves repeating the pledge many times—from sports events to community picnics. What are we pledging allegiance to?
TORNADO DOWNS FRIEND'S TREES, HELP NEEDED
Hugh Iltis’ home area was hit by the recent tornado that downed many hardwood trees (oak, basswood, etc.). Hugh would welcome any Prairie people and friends to bring a chainsaws and take as much wood as they want. Please call him first at 256-7242.
Hugh also wants to give away his heavy canvas center-pole tent (12' x 8' or 10') that he used many times camping in Mexico. It has a floor and zippered opening and can sleep 3 or 4. He also has bags of dolls and stuffed animals that we will bring to Prairie for anyone who would like to have them.
A new "Prairie Elders" group has been formed for fellowship, mutual support and good times. It is primarily for seniors over 65. Meeting times alternate so more people can be involved. Contact Doleta Chapru at firstname.lastname@example.org or 238-4970 if you wish to be contacted about the next meeting. Give her your preference for meeting times. Gatherings will be held at Oakwood Village and Meriter Heights.
STUDY SERIES ON TUESDAY NIGHTS
Two adult forums meet on alternating Tuesdays at 7 p.m. at Prairie: Iraq; and Challenge Corporate Power/ Assert the People's Rights.
For more information, call Nancy Graham at 244-6595.
Update for the Religious Education Director:
Prairie members recommended the following books at our June 27 meeting:
PRAIRIE OFFICE ADMINISTRATOR HOURS
Mondays 7–9 p.m.; Saturdays 10 a.m.–12 noon
OUR NEW RE DIRECTOR
Melissa has been a UU for over 8 years and been active with groups both at First Society and James Reeb. Her wide experience with children has included working with the Interfaith Hospitality Network families, with GLBT youth as a GLSEN Board member, and as a Girl Scout leader.
Please introduce yourself and welcome Melissa to the Prairie community.
HOMELESS MEN'S BREAKFAST
Once a month, Prairie supplies breakfast for homeless men at the Grace Episcopal Drop-In Shelter. Our involvement is definitely appreciated and makes a difference.
If you would like to volunteer to buy and deliver groceries (reimbursed by the Social Action Committee), or to arrive at the shelter at 5 a.m. and cook up turkey bacon and eggs for over a hundred men (a real educational opportunity), please contact Paula Pachciarz (email@example.com or at 273-4806).
We also rely on Prairie folks to donate to the breakfast fund when we pass the Breakfast can on the Sunday before. Thank you to all who continue to support this community service!
INTERFAITH HOSPITALITY NETWORK
Summer goes by fast and Prairie's third volunteer shift this year with Madison's IHN is coming right up. The next week that we assist Midvale Lutheran in hosting several homeless families will be July 11-18. Those who have volunteered before and would like to do so again, please mark your calendars and let Paula Pachciarz know how you would like to help out.
Those who would like to volunteer but are new to IHN can contact Paula for more information at (608) 273-4806 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
is also an information sheet on the Social Action bulletin
board that describes the different ways one can support this
wonderful community service. Our next and last shift will be
in November, during Thanksgiving week.
UU'S REGISTER VOTERS IN GO VOTE COALITION
Members from First Unitarian Society, Prairie, and James Reeb have been active this spring and summer registering voters for the coming fall elections. Every election, a smaller percentage of eligible voters are bothering to cast their ballots. Working with the League of Women Voters, the GO VOTE Coalition has been spearheading a non-partisan voter registration and voter mobilization effort.
We are in need of volunteers throughout the summer who can attend community events to register voters. In the fall, we will need volunteers to call voters, drive voters to the polls, and act as poll-watchers.
For more information on how to get involved, talk to Dan Proud (661-0776).
RELIGIOUS EDUCATION COORDINATOR SOUGHT AT JAMES REEB
James Reeb Unitarian Universalist Congregation is seeking a Religious Education Coordinator.
1. Attend JRUUC on Sundays, 10:30 to 12:30, to connect with parents, teachers, kids.
2. Coordinate parent volunteers for classroom.
3. Sunday orientation of RE to new families.
4. Communicate with parents and teachers.
5. Track attendance of the RE program.
6. Convene and attend the RE committee monthly.
7. Problem-solve issues that arise on Sundays.
8. Coordinate work with office/professional staff.
1. Good organizational skills
2. Good communication skills with adults & kids.
3. Ability to work well with volunteers and office/ professional staff.
4. Child Development or Education background desirable.
Hours and Pay:
Approximately 4 hours/week x 3 weeks/month x 10 months/year
Stipend: $120 month for 10 months
How to Apply:
To apply, send a letter of interest by July 15 to: James Reeb Unitarian Universalist Congregation
Attention: RE Committee
2146 E Johnson Street
Madison, WI 53704
PRAIRIE FLORA: SUMMER GLORY
[Galen Smith gave a tour of Prairie flora on April 18. By popular demand, he continues his description of our little green friends in this, the fourth in the series.]
A variant of Sargent crabapple was recently planted by the Bruce Company to replace the unsatisfactory crab that Pat Watkins planted in memory of her mother several years ago. The new tree should have many small bright red fruit throughout the fall and winter that the birds will eat in spring.
In early July the prairie planting at our church is approaching the height of its summer glory. Still flowering is:
Lesser amounts of the following are in bloom:
The first of the prairie grasses, switch grass (Panicum virgatum) is almost ready to flower. The rock garden is also beautiful, with pink-flowered coral bells (Heuchera sanguinea), yellow-and white-flowered Sedum spp., and pink-flowered baby’s breath (Gypsophila repens) now in flower.
UUSC E-MAIL BULLETIN
Congress must oppose U.S.-sanctioned torture
take a stand to end torture. For an action alert on urging Congress
to oppose U.S.-sanctioned torture, visit:
UUSC leverages its role as an investor to advocate for more responsible corporate behavior on the part of targeted companies. To learn more about this recent success, visit: www.uusc.org/info/article050704.html.
PRAIRIE WEB SITES
Prairie UU: www.prairie.madison.uua.org
PrairieNews Group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/prairienews/
PrairieViews Group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/prairieviews/
Social Action: http://socialaction.homestead.com
[You can find more about these announcements on the information table in the fellowship hall.]
Saturday, July 17. German Fest, Historic Park Hall, 307 Polk Street, Sauk City, WI. 4:30-9:00 p.m.
Sunday, July 18. Coming Out,Coming Together (COCT) Gay Pride March. 1:30 on Capitol Square.
July 30-August 1. Green Spirit Festival: A Celtic Lughnassad Celebration. Registration due July 19.
Dr. James W. Loewen, the author of Lies My Teacher Told Me, is a professor of sociology at the University of Vermont. After teaching many years in Mississippi, he wrote the first revisionist high school history textbook published in the United States, Mississippi: Conflict and Change. Dr. Loewen studied twelve history textbooks widely used throughout the U.S. in high schools and occasionally in junior high schools and colleges. He uses textbook quotes about prominent leaders and contrasts these with primary sources and facts well known by historians. Direct quotes below are in quotation marks; other ideas have been encapsulated and slightly rewritten.
"Facts that are well-known to professional historians are hidden from teachers, students, and the general public." "Some of the information provided is incorrect, some confusing, some unverifiable, along with startling omissions." Some groups cannot find themselves in the history books, and consequently are unable to identify with the heroes portrayed. "This makes history hard to learn for students of color, children of working class parents, girls who notice a dearth of female historical figures, and those in any group which has not achieved economic success."
Textbook's Major Purpose : Promote Patriotism
Credit Is Given to Whites
The impression is left that white Europeans were the ones who taught simpler people to do important things. [Euro-centrism or Ethnocentrism] For example, Henry the Navigator of Portugal is portrayed as "discovering" the Azores and the Madeira Islands. The textbooks do not mention that it is now believed that Afro-Phoenicians sailed these same routes as early as 600 B.C.E.
Racism Portrayed as Heroic
The texts don't report that on his second voyage, Columbus came armed with 17 ships (instead of three) plus 1200-1500 soldiers, cannons, crossbows, guns, cavalry, and attack dogs. "With his military might he easily overpowered the Arawaks....He extorted gold from the Arawaks by a system of tribute." Thousands of Arawaks rebelled by committing suicide, others were shipped as slaves to other places in the Caribbean and Europe. Within 60 years after Columbus' arrival, the Arawaks were all gone—victims of genocide.
"Only one textbook mentions the genocide in Haiti. Only six out of twelve textbooks say that the Spanish enslaved or exploited the Indians anywhere in America."
"No sensible Indian person," wrote George P. Horse Capture, "can celebrate the arrival of Columbus." The rest of us celebrate it with a national holiday in October.
Idealistic Activism Is
Either Ignored or Vilified
Only textbooks after 1970 expressed any sympathy for John Brown or for his cause, though he was the most radical white abolitionist. "One text called him 'deranged,' 'gaunt,' 'grim,' 'terrible,' 'crack-brained,' 'probably of unsound mind.'" Texts only recount his violent insurrections at Potowatomie, KS and Harper's Ferry, VA. (In truth, John Brown made many trips back and forth to Canada escorting groups of runaway slaves on the Underground Railroad. He also conducted organizational meetings in Canada and helped to teach people how to adjust to their new lives there.)
After he was hanged in 1859, John Brown's beliefs and actions inspired many others. Soldiers, black and white, marched into battle singing "John Brown's Body Lies A-Mouldering in the Grave." A few years later it was given new words to the same tune by Julia Ward Howe, and we sing it today as "The Battle Hymn of the Republic."
During the Reconstruction Period after the Civil War, for the first time many Blacks were elected to public office. Yet, the textbooks tell us that during Reconstruction "the Blacks 'failed' because of lack of knowledge and education." During the same period many Blacks and Whites went to the South to help with the Freedmen's Bureau and to establish schools and colleges for emancipated Blacks. Schools and churches were burned and idealists were threatened with violence and death. Many Blacks were killed. The textbooks attribute the efforts of the idealists to "self-interest" and "ambition" and lump them all together into one undesirable group with the label "carpetbaggers" and "scalawags."
Eternal Progress in the
U.S.: the Message
Many of these regressive racist policies were continued until the Civil Rights Movement from 1954-1970. A number of Civil Rights workers were killed: Medgar Evers, James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, Viola Luizzo, Michael Schwerner, and the Rev. James Reeb (a Unitarian minister). The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X were assassinated. Public opinion was galvanized enough to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Although some things are better now, and only older people can remember the worst days, violence continues and racism is still rampant in the U.S. "People of color are still blamed for being on the bottom. Whites are still exonerated for violence and oppression. Massive racial disparities still exist."
"The siren song of progress (and growth) lulls us into thinking that the problem is over and nothing more needs to be done. When we make racism invisible we obstruct our ability to see the truth in the present."
Racism has gotten worse in the past and can easily get worse in the present and the future. Have we stopped searching for the truth about racism simply because we don't see it? If so, like the textbooks, we are whitewashing history.
W. Loewen, "Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your
History Textbooks Got Wrong." New York, The New Press,
1995. Distributed by W.W. Norton, Inc. 500 Fifth Avenue,