Washington, D.C. #3: Democracy and Civic Dialogue in Action

Isaac Bakare ’24, John Woo ’26, and Gracie Spencer ’25 recount a morning visit with a Deerfield Alum followed by an afternoon of free exploration.

To start off our day, we went to brunch at Art and Soul with the Grigsby family. We talked to Lock Grigsby ‘25, his mom, dad and his little sister. His mother, Stacey Grigsby, is a Deputy White House Counsel so we got to hear about the ins and outs of the creation of the White House’s legal documents. She talked to us about all the work she and her colleagues have managed to accomplish in the eight months she’s been working in the White House such as an executive order on reproductive rights released late last year. Lock’s dad, Sherlock Grigsby ‘94 spoke to us about his time at Deerfield and his journey till this point. We heard about his time in the U.S. Senate Page Program and its role in his career choice. Though the program no longer exists, he encouraged that we look into the public sector for our future careers.

-Isaac Bakare ’24

After the brunch with the Grimsby’s, we circled back to the National Mall, which stretches all the way from the US capitol to the Lincoln Memorial. Along the way, we were able to preview the Smithsonian Museums we visited later in the day. We also got to see the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial. Although the walk was chilly, we were able to understand the importance of memorials in the context of democracies. Both the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial exist to commemorate a monumental step that preserves increased representation. The fact that the entire plot of the national mall is dedicated to propagating the concept of democracy stands as a testament to America’s dedication to preserving democratic rule.

-John Woo ’26

Early this afternoon, we split into two groups and went to either the Museum of Natural History or the National Gallery of Art. Some others and I went to the Museum of Natural History where we learned about human evolution and the other species of human, the Neanderthals, that are now extinct but shared many similar traits. We saw many different replicas of mammals and other animals as well as their fossils. We also saw graphs about climate change and how the temperature will raise ten degrees if we don’t do something to change it now. We stopped in the rock gift shop which was fun. After, we all went to Chinatown to get dinner and split again and either went to China Garden or Kura Revolving Sushi!!

-Gracie Spencer ’25