Description 56 - A Bridge For Obama

On the Fourth of July, I show enough audacity of hope to dress in the colours of my old flag (sorta) and walk over a bridge so people can take pictures. With music by The Diableros and the inspirational honking of passing cars.

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Associated links
Another excuse for a Doodlebops link!
Barack Obama (duh)
Blog post about primary voting
Democrats Abroad
VoteFromAbroad.org (and it's Linux!)
The World Wants Obama Coalition
Bridges For Obama pool on flickr
The Diableros @publicbroadcasting.ca (with other links)
The Fringe show from which I got the flyer
CBC story on Corey Glass

An unintentional running theme of this podcast has been people who have moved here from the U.S. and made a difference here in Toronto - Jane Jacobs and Ed Mirvish likely near the top of that list. Another person to add is the woman I spoke to in the second half of this episode.

At the time, all I knew of her was that she came to Canada with her then-husband as he was evading the draft for the Vietnam War, had absolutely no citizenship from anywhere when the U.S. took theirs away without telling anyone, regained it in 1994 (allowing her to move toward getting dual status), recently had a show of her photography in Washington D.C. (an article about it in the Post earned a nasty email from some bigtime military guy), made a movie with her son about Iraq War veterans coming home, and currently teaches at George Brown College here.

That sounds like enough, doesn't it? But with the details, it gets better.

Her name is Laura Jones. Once she moved up here with her husband John Phillips, they owned and managed the The Baldwin Street Gallery of Photography for 13 years. That show in D.C. consisted of her photos from Martin Luther King's "Poor People's Campaign" of 1968, which was about economic inequality among all races. Significant as it was, it's only a part of her ongoing career in photography. The movie, Fayetteville: Forward March Toward Peace, which is about a bit more than those veterans coming home, is available via stream through the NFB's CITIZENShift website.

But there's more. She spent a couple years as a research consultant for the Riverdale Immigrant Women’s Centre, then was a member of Toronto City Council for another couple years. Throughout, she's served in all sorts of capacities on any number of environmental committees and projects, and was awarded the Commemorative Medal for the 125th anniversary of the Confederation of Canada.

Man, good thing I didn't know all that stuff then, or else I'd have barely gotten out a few words to talk to the woman. :-) Most of what we actually talked about was blogging and podcasting: she wants to learn more about it so she can talk about it with her students and maybe use it for some of her other work. So I gave her cursory introductions to the world of Blogger/Live Journal/Wordpress; mentioned Google Video and Vimeo for possible longer-form video; and pointed her sharply toward the Rabble Podcast Network (which of course includes CITIZENShift).

So I have a very strong feeling we have not heard the last of her. And we will be the better for it.

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