5SR - March 20, 2024

Marisa on Katie Britt, hacked records, and Rosie The Riveter

Today’s contributor is Marisa, a corporate employee benefits account executive, a freelance writer, and #5SmartReads contributor, but her favorite title is definitely "mom." Currently reading: None of this is True by Lisa Jewell. Currently listening to: Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann. Currently watching: Only Murders in the Building

As one former Trump aide said in this article, "the staging of this was bizarre to me." But I think it's a very clear example of the old maxim "when they tell you who they are, listen."

The Republican party of the 21st century has made their vision for women's role in society very clear, through their legislation and proposed policies, through who they choose to give voice to and, yes, how they amplify those voices. Whatever you think of her politics, Katie Britt is an accomplished human being. By sticking her in the kitchen for her speech, her colleagues are telling us who they really are.

My husband works for a hospital and I work in health insurance, so it's fair to say this story has been dominating our mutual news consumption lately.

One thing that a lot of people don't realize is how interconnected our health provider and payor systems really are - and an incident like this is an unfortunate reminder, with small providers unaffiliated with giant health systems hurting the most on the provider side, and innumerable consumers unable to fill desperately needed scripts for medications running from your basic, run of the mill cholesterol pills to lifesaving drugs for any number of serious conditions.

In 10 states, more than 2/3 of rural hospitals do not offer labor and delivery services as of January 2024. In Florida, only 3 rural hospitals TOTAL, in the entire state, offer these services. In New Mexico, the median driving time to a hospital with obstetric services is a frightening 61 minutes - in Alaska, it's more than 90.

For folks living outside urban areas, this means that the prospect of becoming a parent is even riskier than it is for those of us who live in cities. That's alarming news in a country where overall fetal and maternal mortality is already higher than in any other developed country.

It's easy to identify problems but hard to solve them, so one thing I appreciated about this article is that it proposed solutions, like training for team based obstetric care and rural maternity workforce strategies.

This was so interesting to me.

I am of course familiar with the Rosie the Riveter trope, but really only knew the Miller poster as the "origin" of the infamous imagery. I didn't even know about the Rockwell cover, which apparently is what really popularized the image, and then separately was impressed with the revamping in the Milton piece at the top of the page.

They say you should learn something new every day, and I definitely did from this piece.

The Osage “Reign of Terror” Murder Trials (UMKC School of Law | Famous Trials)

One of my law school professors runs this site covering the history of famous trials in America, and with the Oscar nomination of Killers of the Flower Moon, there's no better time to visit and learn more about the "reign of terror" that menaced the Osage people in the early 1920s.

If you're in the middle of reading/listening to the book like I am, you may want to hold off until you finish - as far as I can tell, the book is pretty faithful to the facts, so there's definitely "spoilers" if you go looking for additional history. But as both a college history minor and a Midwesterner living in Kansas City (which does get mentioned in the book and was not all that far away from Osage County by train in the 1920s and certainly isn't far away now), I can speak with some authority to the fact that this important history wasn't taught in any of the K-12 schools or universities I attended.

I hope you see the movie, yes, but I hope also that you take the time to read up a bit on this sad and scary part of our American history.

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