Breisch Blog

The Only Thing We Have to Fear…

“So here, then, is the last fifty years of American politics summarized: we became more consistent in the party we vote for not because we came to like our party more, but because we came to dislike the opposing party more. Even as hope and change sputter, fear and loathing proceed.”                                                                  Ezra Klein I fear …

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Where There Is Hatred…

It is so very difficult. When I witness anger and hatred boiling out of a mass of humanity, as that which flooded my life on January 6, part of me wants to turn away and remain in denial. Another part sets out, with the rest of me as an unwitting accomplice, to hate those who …

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Listening & Learning

How might I be different if I knew every idea, thought and reflection I retain in the synapses of my brain is limited or wrong, and acted in every moment as if that were true? How might I treat others differently, and how might they treat me in new ways, if, in a moment of …

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The Tattered and Torn Moral Arc Toward Justice

“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”                                                                                Martin Luther King, Jr. The arc of the moral universe does bend toward justice; however, its trajectory is not unerringly true. As I step ever so gently, perhaps timidly, into the new year, I feel a terrible vulnerability; my naiveté gone, replaced …

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Thank You, Katrina

Note: This essay will appear this month in Neighbors of Batavia Magazine. Likely, you do not know a young Batavian by the name of Katrina Schlenker. You should. Katrina is one of the most talented high school runners in the State of Illinois and is currently a junior at Batavia High School (BHS). Samantha Poglitsch, …

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Such a Joyous Way of Being

“You’re on this earth for a reason. Life is not a right that comes bearing a right, which is the right of getting. Your life is a gift, and it came bearing a gift, which is the freedom and the art of giving. It is such a joyous way of being.” Is it just me, …

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The Conceit of the Human Species

Perhaps it is human conceit, our vanity, that most blinds us. I recently heard of a person whose goal is to make a great deal of money so he can give much of it away. Inherent in his view was a stated desire to reduce poverty around the world. But how much of his desire …

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Vanquishing Wisdom; Impairing the Future

“We never knew what we were going to see—what kicks (sneakers) were going to be on sale; what beef (conflict) was going to be cooking; what guads (boys) and shorties (girls) were going to be rocking (wearing)…We did not care if older or richer or Whiter Americans despised our nonstandard dress like our nonstandard Ebonics…Fresh …

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Dear Father LaGoe

In 1968, as a junior at Muskegon Catholic Central High School, the priest I had for religion class changed my life. I discovered yesterday he is ill, so I drafted the following to send to him today. Dear Father LaGoe, Philosopher and educator, Neil Postman once wrote “Children are the living messages we send to …

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Listening with New Ears

“This is usually where the desire to dismiss claims of racial oppression come from—it just doesn’t make sense to you so it cannot be right.”                                                 Ijeoma Oluo in So you want to talk about race I can be justly accused of remaining silent for far too long when words condemning racism should have been …

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Clawing at the Foundations of Racism

Changing the world, it is said, is an inside job. I’ve used this tale before, but it bears repeating. A couple whose son suffers from horrible bouts of anger and fear take him to a Buddhist monk. “Would you,” they ask, “help rid our son of his demons?” The monk pauses and says, “bring your …

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This. Time. Matters.

I have used the phrase “This time matters” frequently in the time of COVID-19. When asked to introduce myself in groups, I say, “I’m Roger Breisch, Speaker Provocateur.” Then, I pause and declare with resolve “This. Time. Matters.” Looking around, I see many nods of recognition and affirmation. But I didn’t realize how much this …

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