Foundations for Writing

SCSU Site for English 191

October 6, 2019
by Judith Kilborn

Some Twitter threads to discuss

September 29, 2019
by Judith Kilborn

“Greta Thunberg responds to Asperger’s critics: ‘It’s a superpower'”

According to The Guardian, Greta Thunberg

has spoken about her Asperger’s syndrome diagnosis after she was criticised over the condition, saying it makes her a “different”, but that she considers it a “superpower”. ….

She said she had not been open about her diagnosis of being on the autism spectrum in order to “hide” behind it, but because she knew “many ignorant people still see it as an ‘illness’, or something negative”.

“When haters go after your looks and differences, it means they have nowhere left to go. And then you know you’re winning!” she wrote, using the hashtag #aspiepower.

While acknowledging that her diagnosis has limited her before, she said it “sometimes makes me a bit different from the norm” and she sees being different as a “superpower”.

The Guardian also captures two tweets from late this summer that show how Thunberg responds to the “haters.”

September 24, 2019
by Judith Kilborn

“Clean, affordable drinking water is a racial issue.”

Anna Clark points out that drinking water is an issue outside Flint, Michigan, and disproportionately affects communities of color—noting especially Detroit and Chicago.

When it comes to water, you’d think the cities of the Great Lakes would be the envy of the country. In a time of scorching drought and climate change, the northern coast is a place of abundance. The lakes hold an astounding 84 percent of all the surface freshwater in North America.

But even here, we struggle to deliver safe, affordable drinking water to millions of people, often communities of color. Throughout the region, these low-income neighborhoods face high water bills, contamination risks and large-scale shut-offs — all the manifestation of a history that many would like to forget. The “separate but equal” policies of the 20th century are still with us — and they explain why communities cannot take safe drinking water for granted, even amid the magnificent Great Lakes. (

Clark also points out two midwestern cities that are pioneers in removing lead pipes from their water systems: Madison, Wisconsin, and Lansing, Michigan.

September 21, 2019
by Judith Kilborn

Greta Thunberg on climate change in various venues

An initial image from outside the Swedish Parliament in August 2018

And an initial video posted to Thunberg’s Twitter feed that month

Testifying to Congress on September 18, 2019

In a video released by

Speaking in Battery Park, New York at the beginning of the Climate Strike on September 20, 2019

September 21, 2019
by Judith Kilborn

A bit more on the climate strike

Since the protests in the U.S. were just beginning when I posted yesterday, I’m posting the first two U.S. tweet that came across my Twitter feed yesterday—from New York and Chicago. My feed is filled with other images and numbers like this one.

September 20, 2019
by Judith Kilborn


Students are leading the way in today’s climate strikes.

Here are some views of the climate strikes beginning all over the world.

Climate protest in Dublin

Freiburg, Germany


and Berlin





I could go on……

September 15, 2019
by Judith Kilborn

Minnesota labor unions divided over Green New Deal plan

The controversy over the Enbridge Line 3 Project, mentioned in our discussion of the pipeline twitter feed the other day, has hit the St. Cloud Times with its reprint today of the Kansas City Star article “Minnesota labor unions divided over Green New Deal plan.” Here are  the lead paragraphs of the article:

Two national leaders of the Service Employees International Union recently came to St. Paul to talk about the union’s latest initiative to fight climate change: the Green New Deal.

Earlier this summer, the SEIU executive board passed a resolution endorsing the sweeping measure proposed by Democrats in Congress, and the union has since worked to educate its 2 million members about the effort to slow global warming.

The endorsement is notable. Despite the Green New Deal’s popularity with progressive leaders and several Democratic presidential candidates, the SEIU is by far the largest union to support the proposal, which includes a broad set of climate, energy and economic promises. Many unions — especially those representing workers in construction, manufacturing and trades — have been hesitant to back such a massive change to the nation’s energy grid and economy, worrying it’s a political impossibility or that it will lead to unnecessary job losses in industries that employ a lot of union workers.

This controversy over the Green New Deal and its effect on how Democratic presidential candidates might fare with Minnesota voters was also covered in a September 9th article in the St. Cloud Times, “How the Minnesota oil pipeline fight divides Democratic candidates.” Here’s the lead for that article:

A divisive fight over the future of a crude-oil pipeline across Minnesota is pinning presidential candidates between environmentalists and trade unions in a 2020 battleground state, testing their campaign promises to ease away from fossil fuels.

Progressive candidates Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders have condemned a Canadian company’s plan to replace its old and deteriorating Line 3 pipeline, which carries Canadian crude across the forests and wetlands of northern Minnesota and into northern Wisconsin. They’ve sided with environmental and tribal groups that have been trying to stop the project for years, arguing that the oil should stay in the ground.

Others candidates — including home-state Sen. Amy Klobuchar and front-runner Joe Biden — have remained largely silent, mindful that such projects are viewed as job creators for some of the working-class voters they may need to win the state next year. (


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