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Tuesday September 24th: “Cracking the Codes” – a film about racism in America

On Tuesday September 24th the film “Cracking the Codes” will be shown on Bainbridge Island.
Following the film will be a community discussion.

Event details:

Cracking-CodeEvent details:
Racism — 50 Years After the Dream

Tuesday, September 24th
Eagle Harbor Congregational Church
Community Room
105 Winslow Way W.
Bainbridge Island
$5 suggested donation

Here is some more information from the Cedars Unitarian Universalist Church:

A new documentary film about racism in America is being co-sponsored by Cedars Adult Programs.

The 70-minute film is titled Cracking the Codes – The System of Racial Inequity.  The film includes moving personal testimony from 23 leaders who illuminate the issues around racial disparities, and how important it is to deepen the dialogue around race in America.

Following the showing there will be an open discussion facilitated by three members of the community (Peggi Erickson, Sharon Negri, and Charlotte Rovelstad).

Join us at 7pm on Tuesday evening, September 24th at the Eagle Harbor Congregational Church (the building with the white steeple in the heart of Winslow). There is a $5 suggested donation to cover the cost of the room and handouts.  For additional information call 206-780-9718.


Yes! Magazine says “”Cracking the Codes is the most dignified and evidenced response possible to the blithe assertion that we now live in a “post-racial” America.”

Co-sponsors include: Cedars Unitarian Universalist Church, Yes! Magazine, Bethany Lutheran Church, and Suquamish United Church of Christ.

Link to information about the event:


~ Marcie


Banned Books Week Starts Today – What Will You Be Reading?

“Celebrating the Freedom to Read: Sept. 22 – 28, 2013”

From the Banned Books Week web site: “Banned Books Week is the national book community’s annual celebration of the freedom to read. Hundreds of libraries and bookstores around the country draw attention to the problem of censorship by mounting displays of challenged books and hosting a variety of events.”

If you are looking for a book to read in celebration of the freedom to read, here are the 10 most challenged titles of 2012:

1. Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey
Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group

2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
Reasons: Offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group

3. Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group

4. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James.
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit

5. And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson.
Reasons: Homosexuality, unsuited for age group

6. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini.
Reasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit

7. Looking for Alaska, by John Green.
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group

8. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
Reasons: Unsuited for age group, violence

9. The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit

10. Beloved, by Toni Morrison
Reasons: Sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence


Need more ideas?  The University of Pennsylvania has an online list of banned books

If you work in Seattle, you might want to check out this event:
Banned Books Week Readings
Each weekday during Banned Books Week we will read a banned book in the library, from 12-1pm.
This is a brown bag event.
Antioch University Seattle
2326 Sixth Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121

If you want more than a list of books, Banned Books Week also has videos of folks talking about and reading from banned books, including videos of some celebrities:

Banned Books Week is also on Facebook:

i read banned books







~ Marcie


Why Can’t Ending Racism be an American Agenda?

Several 50-year anniversaries relating to the Civil Rights movement have been marked recently – some good and some sad.  The 50th anniversary of the March on Washington was August 28th.  Just a few days ago, September 15th, was the anniversary of the church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama, where 4 young girls were killed.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech, I went to see the movie “The Butler.”  The movie reminded me of the human costs of the fight for civil rights during the 60’s and 70’s, as well as the positive changes that were made.  The anniversary of the church bombing is another reminder of the costs.

Much has been published lately on the opinion page about racism and recent events, and one letter to the editor talked about “left-wing extremists” dividing our Country with all this talk about race.

How can we honor the sacrifices made during the civil rights movement, and applaud like the folks in the theater did after the movie I attended, and not be willing to even discuss the racism still present in our society?  The problem goes beyond individual cases and situations – racism is, unfortunately, imbedded in our culture and our institutions.

I know it is daunting to think about what needs to change to make our laws, and how they are applied, truly fair and just.  But that change can start with each one of us if we recognize that transformations need to be made and start with making them happen locally.  The human rights agenda should be something we all embrace.  Why can’t ending racism be an American agenda?

MLK Quilt Quote Only












~ Marcie

Having Fun with Pi

Pi Day is March 14th (3.14) so I thought I would have a little fun with it.


Here is a history of Pi from

“By measuring circular objects, it has always turned out that a circle is a little more than 3 times its width around. In the Old Testament of the Bible (1 Kings 7:23), a circular pool is referred to as being 30 cubits around, and 10 cubits across. The mathematician Archimedes used polygons with many sides to approximate circles and determined that Pi was approximately 22/7. The symbol (Greek letter “π”) was first used in 1706 by William Jones. A ‘π’ was chosen for ‘perimeter’ of circles, and the use of π became popular after it was adopted by the Swiss mathematician Leonhard Euler in 1737. In recent years, Pi has been calculated to over one trillion digits passed its decimal. Only 39 digits past the decimal are needed to accurately calculate the spherical volume of our entire universe, but because of Pi’s infinite & patternless nature, it’s a fun challenge to memorize, and to computationally calculate more and more digits.”


An interesting fact about Pi:

If you look at a mirror image of 3.14 it spells pie.

Pi spelled backwards










Happy Pi Day everyone!

Pi -3_14








~ marcie

National Wear Red Day ® is Friday February 1st

Go Red for Women!

Wear Red Day Red Dress

National Wear Red Day ® is a day to raise awareness about heart disease, especially about how heart disease affects women.

Heart disease is something that hits close to home for me, in part because it runs in my family.  Even more scary to me, though, is over the last couple of years two women I know that were around my age have died from heart attacks

According to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute coronary heart disease is the #1 killer of both men and women in the United States.

According to the American Heart Association:
“The fact is: Heart disease kills one in three women each year – that’s approximately one woman every minute. But it doesn’t affect all women alike, and the warning signs for women aren’t the same in men. What’s more: These facts only begin to scratch the surface.”

For information about the myths around women and heart disease go to:

There is also a fun challenge for Wear Red Day – America Goes Red Challenge
“We’re looking for the most spirited supporters to paint the town red! Show us how you Go Red by uploading your photos from Facebook, Instagram, Flickr or your desktop in one of the categories. Let’s turn a red spotlight on America and raise awareness of the issue of heart disease in women.”

~ Marcie



Bike to Work Day is Friday May 18th

One of the many aspects of diversity is how we each get to work – many of us take the bus, others drive, carpool or vanpool.  Then there are the bicycle commuters – A hardy group of folks that bicycle to work for a variety of reasons.  For some folks it is actually quicker to ride a bike than it is to drive, although this is truer in a big city than here in  County.  Saving money is another popular motivation.  However, probably the most common reason to ride into work is as part of a healthy life style.  I have always enjoyed both the challenges and the invigorating start to the day bicycle commuting provides.

This Friday, May 18th, we celebrate the bicycle commuter, and encourage others to take it up, by having Bike to Work Day.























If you do ride your bicycle to work, please stay safe out there!

~ Marcie




The Washington State Senate Approves Marriage Equality Bill

I just watched live (on TV – Thanks to TVW) as the Washington State Senate discussed and then approved the Marriage Equality bill – 28 Yeas to 21 Nays.  I was excited a week ago when enough Senators to pass the bill said that they would vote in favor, but seeing it actually happen was exciting on a whole new level.

Prior to the debate on the actual bill, there were several amendments that were discussed and voted on.  Some of the amendments that passed clarified the protections of religious organizations.  Two amendments that did not pass would have allowed non-religious organizations and businesses to discriminate, contrary to our state non-discrimination laws, and would have put the issue to the voters for approval.

There were some very moving words during the discussion of the bill.  Democratic Senator Murray explained how marriage is important because it is how society says you are a family.  Senator Hobbs mentioned that he would be drilling with fellow reserve soldiers this weekend, some of which are gay, and how could he look them in the eye if he did not vote yes on this bill.  He said “I will never leave a fallen comrade behind.”  Republican Senator Steve Litzow has some great matter-of-fact comments in favor of the bill including how the right to marry is part of the constitutional right to pursue happiness.

Now the bill moves on to the Washington State House of Representatives, where it is expected to pass, then on the Governor Gregoire to sign.  I realize there is likely to be a referendum to put this up to a vote of the people, and we will have to endure misleading statements like what one Senator against the bill said tonight – that marriage equality would create a hostile environment for those folks that support traditional marriage.  However, we will also have the opportunity to hear many more stories about how marriage equality will have a positive affect on Washington State families.

This is a huge step forward, and I am hoping the momentum continues until Washington State becomes a place where all families are valued.

~ Marcie


Some Geeky Engineering Humor

Engineers are often thought of as those smart nerdy people, and in some cases we can live up to that reputation.  However, we often have a sense of humor about it.  At the recent Society of Women Engineers (SWE) National Conference (in Chicago, IL), I found many examples of engineers and engineering students having fun with geeky slogans.

See if you can figure out these two examples:

This was a design-winning button (design by Amber Scheurer) being given out to conference attendees











This was on a t-shirt being sold by one of the SWE Sections










The national SWE conference is an annual event that I always enjoy when I can attend, and this year I was one of over 5800 professionals and students that attended.


~ Marcie

Even in the Land of Marriage Equality All is Not Yet Equal

During a recent trip to Vancouver, BC, I found it to be the land of Smart Cars and Prius taxis, where marriage equality is the law of the land.  At the same time, I found it interesting that there were flyers for anti-bullying fund raising events, and that one of my fellow travelers was harassed with anti-gay slurs hurled by local juvenile ruffians.  Clearly having marriage equality is not the end of the line for equality and inclusion; there is still much work to be done even in Vancouver, BC.

~ Marcie

Seattle Slut Walk – Kitsap Action, Kitsap Resource

As I was on the Bremerton Ferry heading to Seattle for the Slut Walk last weekend, amongst all the Seattle Mariners fans, I found a few other Kitsap County folks heading to the Slut Walk.  It was great to see other Kitsap County folks making the trek over to Seattle to help get the message out – rape is caused by rapists, not by what the victims wear.

Some of the other Slut Walkers were from a Kitsap County support group for women who are survivors of child abuse – Adult Survivors of Child Abuse (ASAC) Kitsap.  ASCA is a community based peer support group that provides a safe place for survivors to be themselves, and be there for each other.  The group started up in January and attendance at the weekly meetings ranges from 7 to 15.  This is an important resource here in Kitsap County and I will include their contact and other information at the end.

The Seattle Slut Walk was part of an international movement sparked by comments made by a Toronto police officer who offered advice to women to “avoid dressing like sluts” to prevent them from being assaulted – the old blame the victim school of thought that apparently is not as old as I thought it was.  Needless to say, and rightfully so, the advice has not been well received.

The Slut Walkers were a diverse group including many men, some dressed pretty sluttty in their own way.  There were even some dogs dressing the part.

At the end of the Slut Walk, there was a rally near Westlake Center.  As part of the speeches we were treated to some slam style poetry by Tara Hardy of the Bent Institute.  She really tells it like it is, in her unique creative way.

Some of the signs were fun, and some of the outfits were whimsical.  However, at the rally as some women bravely told all of us their stories of being assaulted, we were reminded of what we were all really there for.

~ Marcie

Adult Survivors of Child Abuse (ASCA) Kitsap meets Wednesday evenings from 6:00-7:30pm at the Lincoln Ave Bible Church in Bremerton.
“The effects of child abuse are life-long, they do not have to be a life-sentence!”
For more information, email them at:

ASCA Kitsap Banner at Seattle Slut Walk