Teenage Girls Struggling Through a Mental Health Crisis
As Mental Health Awareness Month is nearing its end, I reflected on how the mental health crisis among teenage girls is receiving more attention from researchers. This past semester, one of my female students in my beginning English composition class did research on how large percentages of teen girls are continuing to suffer from depression and...Read more
'Big George Foreman' Is a Poignant Testimony of the Boxer's Journey of Faith
"Nothing ever came easy. Every day was a fight."
This quote is part of the opening narration in the film "Big George Foreman," as the former heavyweight champion tells his inspirational life story that began with growing up in acute poverty in the Fifth Ward of Houston, Texas, during the early 1960s. Foreman's mother, Nancy (Sonja Sohn...Read more
A 2023 Commencement Theme on the Meaning of Life
While making copies at one of the local Columbus, Ohio, library branches last week, I overheard an intriguing conversation that would be an excellent commencement theme for this year's high school and college graduates.
The conversation was between a teenage student and a reference librarian regarding budgeting for monthly living expenses. I ...Read more
Faith and Football: Former Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud's Extraordinary Journey to the NFL
Last week's 2023 NFL Draft is in the books, with sports analysts already in the process of drawing up mock draft prospects for next year's college stars.
It still amazes me how the draft, one of the most hyped events in pro football, becomes old news so quickly after the seventh round is completed over a three-day span. Yet, fans remember the ...Read more
Gen Z-ers Focus on God!
If you proposed a challenge to Gen Z college students to discard their smartphones while they are pursuing their degrees, how many do you think would take you up on it? Well, some students at Steubenville, Ohio's Franciscan University, a Catholic institution, are doing just that. They have made a significant choice to focus on their faith in God...Read more
Getting into "Good Trouble" in Tennessee
"And I know that rules sometimes have to be broken, and sometimes you have to get in good trouble." - Tennessee Rep. Gloria Johnson
Those who are well versed in civil rights history know that Gloria Johnson, a Democrat who represents Knoxville in the Tennessee House of Representatives, was referring to the social justice activism of the late ...Read more
Rejoicing in Jesus as The Bread of Life on Easter
During Easter, many of us look forward to what is traditionally called breaking bread, having a delicious, full course spread with family and friends. One of my church sisters describes her Easter dinner as a "mini-Thanksgiving meal." I can definitely relate to this being from the South, as a customary Easter Sunday dinner can consist of a honey...Read more
Kicking off the Easter Season Revisiting the Message of 'The Two Thieves'
With the observance of Easter upon us, many people often take this time to enjoy treasured films that commemorate this season such as "The Passion of the Christ" and "Son of God." "The Ten Commandments," although it specifically focuses on the Old Testament story of Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt, has traditionally been shown on ...Read more
Thank You for Calling Me Ma'am
Two weeks ago, I came across a thought-provoking article posted on CNN.com by Janelle Davis titled "How 'ma'am' went from being a respectful word for some -- but polarizing for others." Davis, a senior producer of integrated content development for CNN, provides an intriguing perspective on how some younger women are often offended if someone ...Read more
Remembering Civil Rights Activist Dr. Dorothy Height for Women's History Month
As Women's History Month celebrations continue, my column this week focuses on Dr. Dorothy Height, whom former President Barack Obama called the "godmother" of the civil rights movement. My generation probably remembers Height best for strategically reaching out and encouraging us to commit to social activist work as we were coming of age during...Read more
The 'Dilbert' Dilemma: A Reflection on Race Relations in America
The contentious fallout from "Dilbert" creator Scott Adams' alarming YouTube tirade encouraging Whites to "get the hell away" from Black people had me yearning for a simpler time, a time long before "cancel culture" infiltrated the news. As a kid of the '80s, I loved reading comic strips that made us laugh about the antics of family life in "The...Read more
Some Thoughts on 'Thoughts and Prayers' After Mass Shootings
The East Lansing community is still reeling from the Michigan State University mass shooting last month that resulted in five students being critically wounded and three losing their lives. The students who tragically passed away -- Arielle Anderson, Alexandria Verner and Brian Fraser -- all had bright futures ahead of them. Arielle had ...Read more