The horrifying weekend of gun violence has moved hate and crime, separately and together, to the top of the political agenda. More people died in automobile accidents this weekend, but the impact of the shootings in Buffalo, New York, and Laguna Woods, California, cast a bigger pall on our national spirit.
Hate. For Blacks in Buffalo. For ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Ineffable. The state and soul of the nation is just that. The National Cathedral bell tolls for thee and me.
But all I have are words. Let me try to explain the sharp sense of loss we carry these days. The fear is real, that the worst of us are stealing America's meaning from the rest of us.
At once, we're suffering four crises: ...Read more
When Supreme Court member Justice Samuel Alito's secret plan for canceling the constitutional right of women to end their pregnancies leaked out to the public, Republican politicos went ballistic! Over the leak, that is.
Sen. Mitch McConnell, the perpetually sour old goose who heads the Senate Republican caucus, had a hissy fit when the news ...Read more
Come and let us pity white people. They are the real victims here.
That, in essence, is the battle cry that’s powered much of American politics for the last 30 years, the last 15 in particular. It has echoed from the halls of government to the set of Fox “News” to the far-flung strands of the world wide web.
Poor white people. They are ...Read more
Remember the old days when President Bill Clinton brought a temporary calm to the raging abortion debate by declaring the ultra-controversial procedure should be “safe, legal and rare?”
That was in 1992, when compromise still sounded like an achievable goal in Washington. Trend lines already were showing abortion to be in a slow but ...Read more
"If you're not a socialist before you're 25," goes the expression, "you've got no heart. And if you're a socialist after 25, you've got no head." Retired Israeli Air Force Gen. Amos Yadlin wryly recalls the line in his office at Harvard University's Kennedy School, where he is wrapping up a semester as a senior fellow. Once an ace fighter ...Read more
Russian President Vladimir Putin is clearly out of his mind. Only a deranged and isolated leader stuck a 20th century time warp would launch an unprovoked and barbaric attack against a people he says are the same as his own -- and say he is saving them from Nazis. The insanity of it all has freaked out his European neighbors, most notably the ...Read more
In a comment on a recent post, Paula OH said: “It’s a very tough time. We need a hope machine! Anyone know how to build one?
My answer to Paula is a resounding: “yes!” And in a moment I’ll give Paula and you some hammers, nails, and solar panels to build one.
First, though, I want to validate your discouragement.
We expected COVID-...Read more
It’s different when it’s your home.
I speak from experience. For 46 years, I’ve made my living by expressing my opinions. And an opinion — at least when it’s on a matter of substance — is by definition a divisive thing. That’s why social etiquette requires that you steer clear of talking politics or religion with cocktail party ...Read more
In the first part of this column, I shared my pedagogical strategy of asking students whether they would like to have coffee with the author whose works they read for class; this, as an invitation to reflect not only on the author's ideas and conclusions but also on his/her values and personality as manifested through the way they write: ...Read more
The House Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol announced on Thursday that it has taken the unprecedented move of issuing subpoenas to five House members who have refused to speak voluntarily to their colleagues on the committee. The five distinguished gentlemen, as House members call each other, are led by Republican ...Read more
The effect of Western sanctions may cause historians of the future to look upon the conflict in Ukraine as a net defeat for Russia. In terms of the military struggle itself, however, Russia is winning.
Watching American and European news coverage, you might ask yourself, how can that be? It comes down to war aims. Russia has them. They are ...Read more
In Washington, acrimonious public disagreements among congressional leaders of the same party are unusual, which was why reporters took note not long ago when Sen. Mitch McConnell publicly spanked Sen. Rick Scott for what he considered an act of monumental stupidity.
What infuriated the Senate minority leader, who yearns above all to become ...Read more
It was the Saturday of the first weekend I had ever spent with Felipe. Our relationship was in that place and time when I knew my heart was approaching the point of no return.
He had already met my best friends and my family. He showed up to my Tuesday night guitar gig and even read an essay of mine I hadn't yet published. Felipe seemed ...Read more
I am not frail. I go to a gym. I lift weights. I walk pretty fast. I carry in the groceries when my wife, Deborah, comes back from the market. We live in a second-floor apartment, so the grocery carrying is harder than it sounds. I haven't lost my hair.
All that age-denying ego puffery aside, I turned 65 yesterday, a little after 7 p.m.
And my...Read more
Even if you’ve only been casually following the fiery debate over abortion rights in the days since a leaked U.S. Supreme Court draft opinion eviscerating Roe v. Wade became public, you are likely well aware that there are deeply entrenched opinions among those who support and oppose abortion rights.
You also are probably aware that party ...Read more
There are few events that fundamentally shake the entire body politic, but last week’s leak of Justice Alito’s draft opinion to overturn Roe v. Wade, reportedly already signed onto by four other justices, is definitely one of them. It’s changed the way we think about many things.
We used to think the rights we fought so hard for, once ...Read more
New York Mayor Eric Adams is a rising power in the Democratic Party. A former police captain, Adams is the answer to the prayers of Democrats who have almost given up praying for a politics they can sell nationally.
Adams is a Black man, who, at age 15, was arrested and beaten up by police. His response: "I didn't say, 'Woe is me.' I said, 'Why...Read more
The right-wing takeover of the Republican Party, symbolized by the end of Roe v. Wade, offers the Democrats the rare opportunity so artfully exploited by President Emmanuel Macron in France: that is, the chance to occupy the middle of the political spectrum.
Ideologues may wring their hands, but the general rule in American politics is that ...Read more
Now comes Justice Samuel Alito, the Princeton man and Eastern elitist who never met a woman he liked, save colleague Justice Amy Coney Barrett on the Supreme Court. He's a "justice" sitting in judgment on us.
Known for his sharp and sour edge, Alito authored a 98-page "draft" opinion that takes away human rights, a rarity in American history.