Jason M. Wester

Jason M. Wester
June 24
My views are mine and mine alone. I reserve the right to be wrong, and I stand to be corrected. I appreciate honesty, authenticity, and independent, informed thinking. I try to enjoy the little things, but I'm not very good at it. My site is http://www.jasonwester.com

Jason M. Wester's Links


Yesterday, I had some intense body aches and my sinuses clogged.  I ran into a nurse, friend of mine, and I asked her if I was getting the flu.

“Could be,” she replied.

I’m feeling a lot better this morning, so the flu is probably ruled out.  Just a little bug. … Read full post »

JANUARY 28, 2013 11:35AM

Nothing to Hope For, and That’s Okay

A dear friend of mine, raised Mormon, wrote to me and expressed his continual disillusionment with that church.  He said that he went to church on the holidays, but otherwise he had little use for it, and let’s be honest, poking holes in Mormonism isn’t exactly back-breaking work… Read full post »

JANUARY 26, 2013 8:02AM

“The Party of Stupid”

Seldom a day passes that I’m not reminded why I am a democrat.  For one, when I glance over the party platform, I am content knowing that my values and those of the Democratic party align rather closely.  If and when those values do not align, I will no longer… Read full post »

My current writing project is a personal essay in which I talk about how I came to be who I am, a person I like more and more every day.  I’ve had to learn how to do that, how to love myself, which might sound silly.  I don’t know.  One of… Read full post »

JANUARY 18, 2013 5:16AM

Teaching Children about Religion

Years ago, I had the privilege of teaching the course Introduction to Humanities, which surveys the history, art, architecture, music, and religious traditions of Western culture.  The course cornered me, forced me to prove my mettle as a teacher, because, as clichéd as it may sound, I think a good… Read full post »

Jenner and Rick


I'm disappointed. Clearly, Jenner whispered that everyone has the virus, which explains the blood test, Rick going out of his way to plug fat man in the head after he'd done the job well enough with a chest-shot, and then Shane's casual observation… Read full post »

As a native Mississippian, I seldom have good reason to be proud.  After all, you name the statistic, and Mississippi is either ranked first or fiftieth.  For example, Mississippi is first in teen pregnancy, fiftieth in states rates of infant mortality.  Conservatism and fundamentalism… Read full post »

One thing that continually amuses me is the twisted non-logic that people trot out in defense of the so-called religious right to circumsize infants.  A very good example of this may be found in Jonathan Wolfman's piece about how a circumcision ban would infringe upon the religious rights of Mus… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 5, 2011 2:16PM

Jason's TKE Potato Salad

Jason's TKE Potato Salad

First of all, I should come clean:  I feel like I'm committing some terrible sin by posting this recipe for potato salad for the general public.  Southerners didn't invent potato salad, but surely we've perfected it, raised it to the level of high art.  That's why this article… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
AUGUST 15, 2011 9:16AM

I Believe In Reality

Author's Note:  the following essay was written for submission to the thisibelieve.org archive.  This is the full version of the essay.  Submissions to the archive must be much more concise at about 500 words.


Remus and my girl


I believe in reality, but it seems silly to st… Read full post »

Back in 2008, in response to an open call, I wrote this piece I titled We Have It Backwards: Accountability vs. Responsibility.  The most read piece I've written for Open Salon, I make the point that the language of accountability, that teachers and students are held accountable to politicians,… Read full post »

Bible Stories

One of the many joys of parenting is teaching.  As a parent to a preschool-age daughter, I am largely responsible for what she learns, and at that age, everything is new to her.  Every day is packed with new information, new connections, new ideas and discoveries, and I find much… Read full post »

 As a non-rich, heterosexual, almost-middle-aged white man, I've had it pretty good.  I've never thought to look over my shoulder to make sure I wasn't being trailed by a potential rapist.  It has never even occurred to me.  I've never received rape threats from people who didn't… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JUNE 14, 2011 12:52PM

College Football: My Tiny Hypocrisy

Ole Miss

I was born and raised in the South, specifically that most southern of States, Mississippi, which means I grew up longing for Saturdays in the Fall when my Ole Miss Rebels took to the gridiron to battle the likes of Alabama, Auburn, and LSU.  The idea is bandied around… Read full post »

 Circumcision is all over the news lately, starting with the efforts to ban the procedure in San Francisco and most recently in Russell Crowe's twitter posts against the procedure.  Crowe, rightly, calls the procedure "barbaric" and predictably, the politically correct set has pilloried him… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MAY 12, 2011 8:57AM

Response to Brooks' "Death to High School English"

My profession, like the title of this blog, is that of compositionist, one who teaches and researches writing, so I was understandably excited to find Kim Brooks' “Death to High School English” as the lead story on Salon this morning. But that excitement wore off as soon as I got/… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 17, 2010 4:28PM

Jailed for Refusing to Recite the Pledge: Danny Lampley

Danny Lampley

Danny Lampley, a North Mississippi attorney, caused a stir on October 7, 2010, when at the behest of judge Talmadge Littlejohn, he refused to recite the pledge of allegiance.  Littlejohn found Lampley in contempt of court and threw him in jail.  The story was picked up by the AP/… Read full post »

We in northern Mississippi’s 1st congressional district, a district that had previously seen almost no competition while Roger Wicker held the seat, have been treated to a rarity: a lively political campaign, replete with spirited debate and prime-time commercials. 

By all accounts,Read full post »




I don’t remember exactly when I became interested, indeed passionate, about male genital mutilation (or circumcision), but at some point during my 20s I came across an article about the normal function of the human foreskin, how it was richly packed with nerve endings,Read full post »

APRIL 23, 2010 11:49AM

Springtime: Robin and Chicks

Robin and chicks #1
Robin and chicks #2 
Robin and Chicks #3
This spring, momma Robin built a nest on our power meter, maybe six feet from the back door, and after weeks of sitting there, yesterday I got my first glimpse of her work: two hungry chicks.  One has to admire the… Read full post »
APRIL 13, 2010 1:06PM

My Double Down Experience

One has to admire the marketing saavy behind the much-discussed Double Down at KFC. The general consensus seemed to be: What the hell? In a culture obsessed, at least ostensibly, with healthy eating, the Double Down seems like a deliberate slap in the face to fat kids everywhere… Read full post »

Data and Lal

Being that I can't justfiy paying for cable or satellite television, can't get around the nagging idea that they should be paying me to watch all the adverstisements, not the other way around, I put up an HDTV antenna to get free over-the-air broadcasts, and I get something like ten channels,… Read full post »

Slugburger at Bourroum's in Corinth, Mississippi

Doughburgers, Dudie burgers, Slugburgers, Cereal Burgers. 

Last summer I began my hamburger tour of my native North Mississippi, seeking out greasy goodness in the small, locally-owned hamburger shacks that proliferate in this area, but I should preface this by saying, I doubt my r… Read full post »

Barry Hannah

Barry Hannah, a world-class writer, teacher, and my reluctant mentor, died yesterday (March 1, 2010).  Today, I feel the lack. 

I first encountered Hannah's work when I was a junior in high school, when I holed up in the back corner of the school's library and read… Read full post »

JANUARY 26, 2010 12:17PM

Mama Ione's Biscuit Pudding

My great friend David, who lives in Baton Rouge, was talking to a man during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He asked him, "Why don't you move your family to another area? This place has gone to hell."

To which… Read full post »