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I wish they taught this stuff in school. How to balance a checkbook, and savings, or retirement—these things that seem so fundamental to having a healthy adult life. Are you okay, and if not, what are we gonna do about it? How do you ask for help? That feels so integral for the education of being a sustainable grown-up.
Achievements in Public Health, 1900-1999: Control of Infectious Diseases
Yeah, and a lot of pressure to 'buck up' and figure it out. Your parents worked hard, your grandparents worked hard, there are people who are worse off than you, which is all beautiful. But we also know that that is not a sustainable existence. Pushing yourself to the limit nonstop makes you sick, and it makes you die. It makes you more likely to get a whole array of diseases. Constant stress is a major factor in your likelihood of getting cancer. The noise is getting louder around that, actually, every person being healthy and happy is very important. Because those individuals and their kids are dealing with the trauma of just working yourself to death.
The part of revolution that troubles me is the idea of overthrow. That, to me, is not sustainable. And even in history—look anywhere that revolution has taken place. It has not sustained. It has not sustained here. I mean, this is a home front of a 'revolution' against the British, and how did that work out?
Genocide was involved, and a lot of death was involved. So, it means participating in the co-creation of better options.
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That triggers a lot of stuff for me, and I feel really resentful towards that and angry about it. Yeah, again, that back-and-forth of 'revolution,' and winning and arm-wrestling. It feels like a great invitation and challenge right now to decide that our solutions should be all-inclusive.
The same way that people of color and minorities have been asking for policies to be all-inclusive. We have to have healthy people. Is your life your music? In other words, I know you stayed in that Italian castle during the making of this album. I know some artists separate things, you know? Would you say everything in your life goes into your music? It feels like it does, yeah.
I had never been in an environment where all I was doing was creating in my life. And I was only [in the castle] because a fellow artist nominated me to be a part of this fellowship program, and I was accepted. So, I was there for four weeks having meals brought to me.
I felt spoiled as hell. But yeah, it was a moment to stop and reflect on this intense experience of my own healing process and healing processes in my family, and deciding that I really am going to pursue a second degree in some version of music therapy that I feel like I can actually work with. And then there were these four weeks of super chill. So, it was able to sink down into a tangible expression, and that is the album.
Yeah, I just registered for my first batch of classes. And I love my students. Like, that gives me hope for our planet and for our species. And that feels like the culture. But the organization required for teaching a course is challenging. One of our courses is applied music activism. That can be awareness building, or fundraising, or having policy change, or getting votes toward a policy change, getting your representative to sign off on opposed legislation—whatever.
But the kicker is—and this has been really eye-opening—what the course is really about is learning to track the efficacy of your work. I feel like a missing link in activism, at least in the way I engage with it, is that measuring metric. Like, 'Okay, we did this for three months, other than the bill passing or not passing, what happened?
Who saw it? Who connected with it? Was the narrative clear? Every concept that I invite into the space, they just pick it up and turn it into a kaleidoscope. Oh my god! And it keeps me on my toes. Like, 'Okay, I gotta come correct. But not everybody in the audience knows that because some people come for the glamour and the spectacle, just the experience of seeing a concert. These students are so bright and so hawk-like. They have this very healthy skepticism of authority in general. So, I feel like they really hold me accountable. How is it doing your thing and still being a part of the fabric of this neighborhood.
When I look out, I look out. I was going to touch on just that. You have clout, you have a following of people who listen and look up to you, so I was wondering if you find it important to use your platform as a means of illuminating certain issues? Yeah, of course. I just try to keep everything as real as possible. Why music? As a child, what made you decide that music is what you want to be doing?
My uncle came home from jail and he inspired me to start rapping. I grew up around everything. Knowing your HIV status gives you powerful information to help you take steps to keep you and your partner healthy. This section answers some of the most common questions related to HIV testing, including the types of tests available, where to get one, and what to expect when you get tested. Click here to find an AHF Healthcare center near you.
Everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care. People at higher risk should get tested more often. If you were HIV-negative the last time you were tested, and that test was more than one year ago, and you answer yes to any of the following questions, you should get an HIV test as soon as possible because these things increase your chances of getting the virus:. You should be tested at least once a year if you keep doing any of these things.
Sexually active gay and bisexual men may benefit from more frequent testing for example, every 3 to 6 months. Before having sex for the first time with a new partner, you and your partner should talk about your sexual and drug-use history, disclose your HIV status, and consider getting tested for HIV and learning the results. HIV tests are typically performed on blood or oral fluid. If you use any type of antibody test and have a positive result, you will need to take a follow-up test to confirm your results.
The time between when a person may have been exposed to HIV and when a test can tell for sure whether they have HIV is called the window period. The window period varies from person to person and depends on the type of test used to detect HIV. Antibody tests can usually take 23 to 90 days to reliably detect HIV infection.
Most rapid tests and home tests are antibody tests. In general, antibody tests that use blood from a vein can detect HIV sooner after infection than tests done with blood from a finger prick or with oral fluid. For other tests, you should test again at least 90 days after your most recent exposure to tell for sure if you have HIV. You can ask your health care provider for an HIV test. Many medical clinics, substance abuse programs, community health centers, and hospitals offer them too. Getting an HIV test is free at all of our sites and at the sites of all of our partner organizations.
If you receive an HIV-positive test result, our trained and certified AHF counselors will walk you through the next steps. HIV is not curable, but it is treatable and the treatments are highly effective. Caring for those living with HIV is our mission. Old-growth forests are forests that have never been logged. They contain trees many hundreds of years old. So I set about writing a book about the old-growth forests in the Eastern US. The new book Among the Ancients enabled me to be a voice for the ancient forests, but at the same time I realized that some of our ancient forests were still threatened with logging.
And almost no one was talking about preserving some of the once-logged forests to let them recover. So much needed to be done! In addition to saving the forests, ideally we need to help more people connect with the forest. Children, especially, need opportunities to spend time in an older forest. But how would parents find these places for their children? How far would they be willing to drive? A database that showed where the protected, accessible, open-to-the-public, forests were located would be useful for connecting people to the forest ecosystem.
Esperanza: How did you go from being an academic who cared about and studied plants to becoming the founder of a national organization? The goal of the organization would be to preserve at least one forest in every county in the United States that could sustain a forest. The result would be a national network of treasured forests where all generations can experience native biodiversity and the beauty of nature. I am not a wealthy person so I would need financial support. This all pointed toward the creation of a non-profit organization.
But there are so many environmental non-profits already! I thought, surely there must already be one that speaks out for the ancient forests of the United States? I searched and searched but found no national organization speaking specifically for preserving ancient forests no matter the owner. So I started the Old-Growth Forest Network in , still thinking that I would eventually uncover an organization with a similar mission.
Six years later I can say that I am sure that no other organization like this exists. Four years after that ah-ha moment, and one year after I lost my spouse to a fast-moving disease, I took an early retirement from the university and started working full-time to create the Old-Growth Forest Network. The organization is now six years old.
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We have two full-time and two-part time employees. I have published two more books about forests. The Old-Growth Forest Network now includes 91 forests in 21 states. Information about all of them may be found on our website: www. Will you just continue to grow the Network or do you have other plans? Joan: Although this growing Network sounds like something to celebrate — and it is!
We get calls from people all over the country who want us to help them save their local forests. We are full of ideas! Although we have vastly more work to do than we can accomplish with our small staff, we are a joyful little team. Speaking for the forests is an honor because we realize that we are not just speaking for the trees, but we are also speaking for all the other organisms — from birds to salamanders to mushrooms — that depend on that forest. We are also speaking for future human generations who will be grateful that they have ancient natural forests to visit.
Joan: Believe me, I know it seems like there are already so many environmental organizations! I am a member of many of them. The Old-Growth Forest Network is unique because we are the only national group speaking out specifically for older forests of all ownerships.
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