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Posts published in “Issue: Summer 2023

You can influence how our communities grow over the next 20 years

“The devil is in the details” is all too true when it comes to Comprehensive Plans that determine the shape of the communities we live in. The plans identify a series of goals, objectives, policies, actions and standards that guide day-to-day decisions of local government officials. The plans go a long way to determining how quiet our streets will be, whether there will be trees, thriving farms and wetlands, will there be affordable places for families to live, and on and on.

Unplugged music in the streets: You, too, can make it!

Think of joyfully singing old Beatles tunes on a road trip with friends, or stomping your feet to Queen’s “We Will Rock You” at a sporting event. How did it make you feel? Connected? Energized? Part of something larger than yourself? You don’t need to be told that music, with or without lyrics, has a powerful binding energy.

Missing: Men in elementary school classrooms

As a kindergarten teacher, Chad Hargrove purposely emulates the late Fred Rogers, better known as children’s television host Mister Rogers. No one in Hargrove’s class needs to be told that men can be kind and soft-spoken...

To thrive, students need more than just a good teacher

In the long and merited discussion of teacher pay, one group of educators in the classroom has been forgotten: paraeducators. These are the people working in and out of classrooms to fill the gaps to help ensure that vulnerable students receive a quality education and a chance at a good life.

An Anniversary of War

The dictator looks over his shoulder, afraid. The actor rallies his countrymen, tired...

Breeding hope: The paradox of parenthood in a world on the brink

REFLECTION: I ask myself the same questions many others in my generation ask: Should I have kids, given the world we live in today? What will my future child’s life look like if climate projections come to fruition? How will my child’s existence affect the earth’s ecosystems, plants and animals? Will it be better to be alive, despite these challenges, than never to have been born at all?

Poverty, by America

BOOK REVIEW: Matthew Desmond has written a powerful, compelling complement to his 2017 Pulitzer Prize winning Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City.

Make America safe for child labor—again

America’s social studies textbooks urgently need an update — on child labor. Our textbooks, ever since the middle of the 20th century, have been applauding the reform movement that gradually put an end to the child-labor horrors that ran widespread throughout the early Industrial Age. Now those horrors, here in…

Revisiting Capital Homecare Cooperative

A new Washington law, SB 5096, provides a path for workers in Washington businesses to create cooperatives. In the Spring issue of WIP, we interviewed Nora Edge, founder and former General Manager, and Paulette LaDouceur, current General Manager of Capital Homecare Cooperative. We decided to revisit some of their insights into the benefits a cooperative structure offers for workers.


If we worshiped water and air Things like Ohio wouldn’t happen Or Valdez, Chernobyl, Deepwater Horizon There would be no DAPL to protest...

The Parasitoid Port of Olympia

UNCENSORED: The Rev. Dr. John R. Van Eenwyk has retired as a clinical psychologist and Jungian analyst in private practice, an ordained priest in the Episcopal Church, a clinical instructor at the University of Washington School of Medicine, and an Adjunct Professor at Antioch University. He co-founded the International Trauma Treatment Program here in Olympia.

We need to expand young voters’ access to the ballot

PERSPECTIVE: On April 20, Cleta Mitchell, a leading voice in conservative politics said this: Republicans should make it harder for young people to vote. On April 20, Cleta Mitchell, a leading voice in conservative politics said this: Republicans should make it harder for young people to vote. This brazen campaign of youth voter suppression is morally wrong. And it is especially high-stakes in this political moment, when youth turnout has been credited for electing presidents and staving off red waves.

Launching the Columbia Street Food Co-op

In 1977, the brand-new storefront Co-op downtown on Columbia Street was slowly coming together, the result of volunteers building shelves, laying flooring, and setting out food. I had moved out West to find my people—the hippies. The best place to look was near co-ops and collective restaurants that sprouted up wherever hippies had settled.

Dawud Halisi Al-Malik

Dawud Al-Malik’s story, Fifty Years in Prison for Crimes He Didn’t Commit, was told in a two-part interview with Wendy Tanowitz in the July and August 2018 issues of Works In Progress. An excerpt from his memoir is in this issue.

Growing up Black in Jim Crow Texas

An excerpt from a memoir, From the Depths of Darkness, by Dawud Al-Malik, (with James O’Barr), Mud Flat Shorts (mostly Fiction), Mud Flat Press, 2022 ...I was born David Washington Riggins—what I came to think of as my slave name...

People Over Pentagon Act

As politicians wrangled about cutting future spending on existing programs, in exchange for agreeing to raise the limit on US borrowing (“the debt ceiling”) it turns out that defense spending is untouchable. No cuts there, period. The weapons industry has institutionalized the permanent war economy...