HomeAboutProfessionalVolunteerOpinion ArticlesInspirationContact
Practically Idealistic blog
The title for this blog originated with use of the term “practical idealist” in this 1996 opinion piece, which asked: “To what kind of work should a practical idealist aspire?” A century and a half earlier, Emerson, in his 1841 essay Circles, wrote: “There are degrees in idealism.  We learn first to play with it academically. . . .  Then we see in the heyday of youth and poetry that it may be true, that it is true in gleams and fragments.  Then, its countenance waxes stern and grand, and we see that it must be true.  It now shows itself ethical and practical.”  John Dewey and Mahatma Gandhi embraced practical idealism in the 20th century, as did UN Secretary General U Thant.  Al Gore invoked it in a 1998 speech. In the context of this blog, the term is meant to convey idealism tempered but not overwhelmed by realism: a search for the ideal on a path guided by common sense.
Archive Newer | Older

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Teachers Institute Opens New Year

The Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute held its 2013 Open House earlier this month, with New Haven public school teachers’ seminar applications due next week.

7:30 am est 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Last week, the Connecticut Mirror published "On Guns and Security: A Parent's Plea for Reason" reflections spurred by the Newtown massacre and the National Rifle Association’s perverse, if unsurprising, response.

I argue, “This is about how we define security, its reality and its perception,” and ask, “What actually makes our communities and families secure? What makes our children feel secure?”

In 1999, months after the Columbine attacks, the Hartford Courant and Minneapolis Star Tribune published "Hamilton Would Have Embraced Gun Control" – my admittedly speculative attempt to adapt Alexander Hamilton’s pragmatic federalism to a modern challenge.

9:11 am est 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Encouraging “Men Who Give” to Counter Domestic Violence

The Center for Domestic Violence Services is featuring "men who give" to support this cause.  Please consider doing so, particularly now as a foundation will match gifts.

7:16 am est 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

President Obama Proclaims National Mentoring Month

President Barack Obama and the White House yesterday issued a proclamation for National Mentoring Month, which is January. 

President Obama said in part, “A supportive mentor can mean the difference between struggle and success. As we mark this important occasion, I encourage all Americans to spend time as a mentor and help lift our next generation toward their hopes and dreams. To learn more about how to get involved, visit www.Serve.gov/Mentor.”

11:12 pm est 

Archive Newer | Older