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Editor’s Letter – 5/1/19

Last Wednesday, my workday began with a demonstration at the Oklahoma State Capitol and ended with a bottom-shelf beer tasting at Langdon Publishing headquarters here in Tulsa.

I was out the door of my Riverview duplex at 8 a.m. to report on the Rally to Expand Coverage in OKC. Then, after a quick stop at the McDonald’s on eastbound I-44, I met with our design and editorial staff to determine the best fizzy-yellow “backpack beers” less than $3-per-24 oz.

This, I think, says a lot about our project here at TTV. We try to strike a fine balance between business and pleasure, and we’ve got both in spades this time around.

First, business: 600,000 of us don’t have health insurance. That’s a crisis, folks. And until we win a moral community of single-payer universal healthcare—no premiums, no deductibles, no insurance companies—we must increase coverage for our most vulnerable neighbors however we can. Too many live on the razor’s edge between poverty and a bad diagnosis. We need Medicaid expansion now.

You’ll also find coverage of the recent cuts at the University of Tulsa. First, Barry Friedman talks to “some disgruntled faculty” about the 40% reduction in degree and certification programs. Then Fraser Kastner looks at how this “reimagining” will affect graduate students and studies. TU is a private university, but its place in our community gives everyone a stake in its future.

Elsewhere, we’ve got the case for robust public higher-education funding from OK Policy alongside Matt Carney’s interview with Eric Blanc, author of Red State Revolt: The Teachers’ Strike Wave and Working-Class Politics—a valuable reminder we’re all in this together, and we can win the future we want.

Finally, pleasure: Check out Mary Noble’s story about local podcast, Digital Intercourse. Hosts Tom King and Lauren Turner talk about sex and relationships, kink and connection. We’ve also got Cassidy McCants’ Q&A with literary superstar Tommy Orange; and Alicia Chesser Atkins looks at the life and legacy of Bette Howland, “a case study for the movement of honoring women writers whose work has been erased.”

I won’t spoil the cheap-beer taste test for you—a scandalous result—nor will I spoil Avengers: Endgame, which I have not seen and will never see. Spoilers abound in Alexandra Robinson’s micro-essay about Mean Girls, a personal favorite turning 15 this year, which you should catch at Circle Cinema on May 10.

Do not miss Lyndsay Knecht’s stunning profile of Lucia Lucas, who will make history in her main stage U.S. debut in Tulsa Opera’s Don Giovanni on May 3. You’ll love Lucia, and Lyndsay’s prose, and the stunning photography by Valerie Wei-Haas.

I’m honored to share it all with you—business, pleasure, and everything in between.