An Update On The Republican Health Care Bill, Wisconsin’s Traditional Archers, Single People Shouldn’t Have To Pick Up Slack At Work

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Wisconsin Traditional Archers is a group preserving the hunting techniques of the past as well as the art of hand-making bows. The group’s president is with us to talk about the detailed craft and the magic of shooting a bow you made yourself. At work, single people may be expected to shoulder more of the workload than those with spouses and families. Our guest says that’s a problem, as single people are often just as busy in their personal lives. We also get an update on the latest news on the Republican health care bill, including reports that President Trump called it “mean.”

Featured in this Show

  • President Trump Calls House Health Care Bill 'Mean'

    On Tuesday, President Trump reportedly told Republican senators that the House-passed healthcare bill is “mean.” He urged them to create a version of the bill that is “more generous,” according to congressional sources. A healthcare correspondent gives us an update on the Republican health care bill.

  • Wisconsin Traditional Archers Preserve Bow-Making Craft

    The members of Wisconsin Traditional Archers are dedicated to old-school hunting values, including the use of hand-made, wooden bows. The group recently held a “Bow Jam,” where men and women of all ages crafted their own bows from a single piece of wood. The group’s president is with us to discuss the craft, and why he thinks firing your own bow is a magical experience.

  • Wisconsin Archers Keep Tradition Alive Through Handmade Bows

    Like anything else, archery fell victim to changing technology.

    The sport has been around since the Stone Age. But for years, it has been dominated by compound bows — all pulleys and levers.

    But there’s a group of traditional archers in Wisconsin dedicated to the old-school way of doing things: Just a single piece of wood and a string.

    “You hold it back with just your muscles, there’s no mechanical let off to help the archer in that way,” said Gary VandenLangenberg, president of the Wisconsin Traditional Archers. “And then you shoot it instinctively or what some people call gap shooting. It’s a really fulfilling way to shoot, to hunt with what we call traditional archery.”

    Shooting this way is an art. It means giving up some of the advantages that come with modern compound bows, like further shooting distance and better aim.

    It also means you can make your own bow. Wisconsin Traditional Archers recently held its annual Bow Jam, where newbies and experts, young and old alike, tried a hand at it.

    They started with clunky, 8-foot logs. The end result, ideally, is smooth, symmetrical, graceful bows.

    “It’s really fun watching the young kids, and even the older beginners, get started,” he said. “And they just are amazed once they start shooting arrows out of this bow that they constructed in one weekend.”

    Each bow is unique and one-of-a-kind, and it’s a process. The group made self bows, a type of one-piece wooden bow.

    “You’re not just carving the wood into a bow and plowing your way through it and making it a certain shape,” VandenLangenberg said.

    “You’ve gotta follow the growth rings, the grain of the wood, the location of the knots and other imperfection in the wood must be noted. You’re almost discovering the shape of the bow as you go.”

    The compound bow was invented in the 1960s and has only gained steam since. However, different factors still pull people into traditional archery.

    VandenLangenberg grew up on compound bows, but he became disheartened with the commercial aspect of it.

    “It seemed like the mainstream hunting media was just trying to push products, there was no respect for the animals,” he said. “I explored it further, got myself a used recurve bow, and actually, I’ve never looked back.”

    Traditional archers are still a minority. Of the 11 million Americans who bow hunted in 2015, 83 percent shot compound bows.

    But Wisconsin Traditional Archers has over 430 members, according to the group’s website.

    And for traditional archers like VandenLangenberg?

    “There’s nothing else like it,” he said.

  • Guest Says Single Workers Shouldn't Have To Pick Up Slack From Married Coworkers

    When Janet Napolitano got the nomination for secretary of homeland security in 2008, a former Pennsylvania governor said that Napolitano was perfect for the job, because she has no family and could then devote 19 or 20 hours a day to the job. Our guest argues that single employees shouldn’t have to pick up the slack for their married coworkers.

  • How Single And Married Co-Workers Are Treated Differently

    Social scientist Bella DePaulo said there’s a workplace division that needs to be examined — how single workers are treated in comparison to their married colleagues.

    “Often it’s the married workers who are more valuable, and whose needs and wishes are considered more important,” DePaulo said. “So if they want to take time off, or leave early, or not have to come in for the holidays, or not have to take the travel for the weekends, they are more likely to get the nod than single people are in many workplaces, even though workplaces should be about work.”

    DePaulo, the author of “Singled Out: How Singles Are Stereotyped, Stigmatized, and Ignored, and Still Live Happily Ever After,” said assumptions are often made about the needs and desires of single employees that are based solely on marital status, not on their individual lives, or on actual data.

    One high-profile example she cites is the reaction of then-Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell when Janet Napolitano received the nomination for Secretary of Homeland Security in 2008.

    “Janet’s perfect for the job. Because for that job, you have to have no life. Janet has no family. Perfect. She can devote, literally, 19, 20 hours a day to it,” Rendell said.

    “It’s as if the assumption is that if you’re single, and you don’t have kids, that means you don’t have a life,” DePaulo said.

    But DePaulo said research shows that often single people have just as many commitments and responsibilities as married people. Single people also have higher rates of community engagement through volunteering than their married counterparts in all areas except places of worship.

    And she added, they tend to maintain larger and more robust social networks. And she said that longitudinal studies of single and married people prove that to be the case.

    “Couples who move in together or get married become more insular. So they pay less attention to their friends and their parents,” DePaulo said. “So it’s just the opposite of the stereotype that single people are isolated and lonely, when actually, they’re the ones nurturing their connections.”

    Lifetime earnings between single and married women also provide an interesting comparison, DePaulo said.

    While historically, married men were paid more than married women because they were assumed to be the breadwinners of the family, DePaulo said, a similar dynamic is at play today between women.

    She said that earnings for single women over the course of a career are lower than for a married woman, and that may be because of an assumption that the single person has “just herself” to support.

    “Well, single people, especially if they’re living alone, they have only their own income to depend on. So if they get laid off or if their hours are cut back, they don’t have a spouse who can then pick up the slack,” she said. “And they don’t have a spouse that they can then say, ‘Well, I’ll go on my spouse’s health care plan.’ They’re really more financially fragile in the fact that it’s just them — there’s not a fallback on opportunity.”

    DePaulo points out it isn’t just workplace culture that gives preference to married workers over single people. It’s actually enshrined in federal law and policies.

    The Family and Medical Leave Act has been in place since 1993 and requires many employees with job protection and unpaid leave for qualified medical and family reasons, which includes care of a spouse, but not a loved one who is not related by marriage or parenthood.

    “But I, as a single person, I can’t take time off to care for someone important to me, like a close friend or a sibling. And no such person can take time off, under the act to care for me,” DePaulo said.

    Even with the many examples DePaulo cites of the workplace inequities between single and married colleagues, she does see some positive signs.

    “There are bosses and workplaces that are becoming more attuned to these issues. Which of course they should be because the number of people who are single (has) been growing for decades,” DePaulo said.

    “Every time the census bureau releases a new report, it shows that there are more single people. And even if you count people who get married, Americans spend more years of their adult lives not married than married. So this is an issue that should be becoming increasingly salient and important and something that’s attended to in the workplaces.”

Episode Credits

  • Rob Ferrett Host
  • Veronica Rueckert Host
  • Amanda Magnus Producer
  • Dean Knetter Producer
  • Yasmeen Abutaleb Guest
  • Gary VandenLangenberg Guest
  • Bella DePaulo Guest

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