At this stage, the 2016 presidential campaign is looking a lot like high school. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, for example, sounds like the locker room bully who would torture Louisiana Gov. Bobbie Jindal with wedgies.
And Donald Trump? He's the class clown. He's the student government candidate who sells fake ID card on the side -- which he ...Read more
One of the most ironic things about U.S. presidents is how soon after they get comfortable with the job that it's over.
That's a happy thought to those who can't wait to see President Barack Obama go -- as the ranks of hopeful Republican candidates grow well past a dozen.
But the president's attitude? "Bucket."
That's what he said with a ...Read more
What a deal. The Supreme Court's Obamacare decision reminds me of a demand that an aide to the late Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley is said to have given to reporters: Don't say what the mayor says, say what he means.
Conservatives hoped that the high court would hold congressional Democrats to what they wrote in the Affordable Care Act, better ...Read more
Could this, at last, be the end of the Civil War?
Or, as some fans of Southern heritage call it, the War Between the States?
Or the War of Northern Aggression?
That question came to mind as I watched South Carolina's Republican Gov. Nikki Haley do what I thought I might not live to see a South Carolina governor do. She called for the removal ...Read more
Witnesses say that the white gunman who killed nine people at Charleston's historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church was quite vocal about his motives: He wanted to kill black people.
Quoting a survivor of the horror, Sylvia Johnson, whose cousin Rev. Clementa Pinckney was one of three ministers killed in the church, said the shooter ...Read more
Perhaps we African-Americans should feel flattered that Rachel Dolezal wanted so desperately to be one of us.
Or maybe we should feel insulted, as some of her critics say, by her demonstration of white privilege even as she boldly lived a life of opposition to it.
You know who I'm talking about. Everybody's been talking about Dolezal, the 37-...Read more
His campaign is a long shot, but I'm happy to see Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders putting forth a good impersonation of a serious challenge to Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. Like a near-sighted javelin thrower, the self-described democratic socialist may not score many points but he'll keep the crowd alert.
The former first lady, senator ...Read more
Keeping the pronouns straight. In my experience, that's the hardest part of adjusting to a friend's sex-change operation.
My experience in this case consists of working in the same newsroom as Ridgely Hunt, an award-winning war correspondent for the Chicago Tribune, as he became Nancy Hunt in the mid-1970s.
Or as Nancy probably would prefer to...Read more
How to Win in Every ScenarioRom Gayoso
This book is about a business research technique called “Scenario Planning”. Scenarios were originally created in the 1960’s for defense purposes; later on they were adopted by private enterprise with exceptional results. Nowadays they are also used for public policy.
It's not easy to find a middle ground between the tough-on-crime and "#BlackLivesMatter" movements, but it has to be done.
As police officers find their routine stops or arrests recorded increasingly by civilians with their smartphones, a rising chorus of critics fear that wary cops already might be bringing the nation's 20-year crime dip to an...Read more
After watching the fuss Republican presidential wannabe Mike Huckabee made about Beyonce Knowles early this year, it has been amusing to watch him try to wriggle and squirm his way out of the Duggar family's scandal.
In his latest book, the former Arkansas governor and Baptist pastor got all judgy about the president and first lady allowing ...Read more
This story is not new.
On March 6, Matthew Kenny, a police officer in Madison, Wis., shot and killed an unarmed 19-year-old black man named Anthony Robinson Jr., who, he said, had attacked him. The shooting triggered days of peaceful protests. An autopsy found a cocktail of illicit drugs in Robinson's system. Earlier this month, ...Read more
For all the decades of its existence, American social conservatism has been rooted in a premise simple enough to be fully expressed in just three words:
Us versus them.
As in, an implicit promise to defend the former against the latter. This was its mission when it pushed for immigration quotas in the 1920s, when it animated the Red Scare of ...Read more
(Bill Press is filling in for Clarence - ed.)
HAVANA, Cuba -- If you want to see the face of the new Cuba, talk to Niuris Higuiera, co-owner and chef of Havana's Paladar Atelier (paladar's the name Cubans use for privately-owned restaurants).
Higuiera's not only a top chef, the Alice Waters or Nora Pouillon of Cuba, she's as sharp an ...Read more
Maybe some people didn't understand the question.
It was posed in this space a few weeks ago by Tracy, a self-described 55-year-old white woman from Texas who is sick and tired of the mounting litany of police violence against unarmed African-American boys and men. She wanted to know what actions she, as an average person, might take to help ...Read more
News that B.B. King has died aggravates my anecdotage, the stage of life in which every new development reminds you of an old story.
I was not much of a blues fan before I, as a young Chicago reporter in March of 1972, was enlightened by Riley B. "B.B." King. That's the full name of the great blues king who had been branded "Blues Boy" years ...Read more
If Michelle Obama's critics actually paid attention to her recent commencement speech, they would hear a lot of advice that conservatives like to hear -- when it is not coming from Michelle Obama.
Rest assured, you can enjoy the first lady's speech to graduates at historically black Tuskegee University without being a white-hating racist, ...Read more
Some people unfortunately think that the best way to respond to the intolerance of Muslim fanatics is to insult all Muslims.
That's the twisted thinking behind professional Muslim-baiter Pamela Geller's ill-advised contest in Garland, Texas. Her organization, the American Freedom Defense Initiative, offered a $10,000 prize to a ...Read more
Riots can bring out the best in politicians -- and the worst.
The Watts riots in Los Angeles 50 years ago, among other civil disturbances of that period, led President Lyndon B. Johnson to pass the Fair Housing Act of 1968. They also led him secretly to look for possible communist conspiracies behind the uprisings.
Michigan Gov. George Romney,...Read more
Unlike my own parents, I normally do not condone lifting a hand to spank, slap or whip misbehaving children. Yet I salute Toya Graham, now known widely known as Baltimore's Angry Mom, for making corporal punishment look like high art.
Graham became an Internet sensation after she was caught on video in the act of snatching her 16-year-old son ...Read more
Some people protest police brutality in ways that only remind us of why we need police.
That's how I feel about the Baltimore rioters who some news reports described as "protestors."
The label falsely flatters the thugs and hooligans who set fires and attacked police, merchants and journalists after the otherwise respectful funeral on Monday ...Read more