You'd have thought she had thrown Bernie Sanders to his death from a tower of million-dollar bills.
Actually, what film director Ava DuVernay tweeted on Saturday was just a mild rebuke: "I'm undecided. But I know this isn't what I want." She was responding to a Sanders tweet warning the Democratic and Republican establishments that, "They can't...Read more
Back during the scandal over his sexual exploitation of a young intern, Bill Clinton was pilloried in this space for his moral defects.
To which many liberals responded with derision. Morality? What did that matter? The economy was good, we were at peace and Clinton was hardly the first man to fool around and lie about it. As one reader put it,...Read more
Nothing spreads like fear.
That was the tagline of "Contagion," a 2011 movie in which the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow, Laurence Fishburne, Matt Damon and Kate Winslet contend with a mysterious virus that soon decimates the globe. It earned good reviews, high marks for accuracy and $136 million in worldwide box office. Then it was more or less ...Read more
Vote blue, no matter who.
That's the fall election mantra of Democrats desperate to cleanse the White House of its current occupant. But here's the question some African Americans are now asking: What if the "who" is Michael Bloomberg? What if the former New York City mayor is the man chosen to contend against Donald Trump? Shall we vote blue ...Read more
People keep asking me about George Simon.
They want to know why I created him and if it was hard to do. One person told me I was "brave."
I wasn't trying to be brave. I was trying to write my latest novel, a World War II story called "The Last Thing You Surrender." But, you see, George, one of my protagonists, is white and I'm not. And at book...Read more
Let's try a thought experiment.
Suppose your friend invites you to play Monopoly. But suppose she insists on a set of special rules applicable only to her. Like when she lands on your property, she only has to pay half the required rent. And for every house she buys, she gets one free. And when she passes "Go," she gets $500.
How legitimate ...Read more
Certainly, if it's moral failures you're after, you can take your pick.
Just last weekend, after all, Republican senators finally admitted that Donald Trump is guilty of the offenses for which he was impeached. They conceded this as they prepared to acquit him. Sen. Lamar Alexander assured us the president learned his lesson and won't do it ...Read more
Surely you remember the "basket of deplorables."
That was Hillary Clinton's 2016 characterization of some Donald Trump supporters. Observers saw it as a major gaffe, and conservatives erupted in hot, "How dare you!" indignation at the idea there was anything deplorable about voting for a lying, racist, misogynistic, vagina-grabbing, deadbeat.
"Kobe is dead."
Those were the first words out of my middle son's mouth when I answered the phone. I paused, waiting for the punchline to this really bad joke. He said it twice more. My mouth fell open. Was he serious? It felt like words had become disconnected from meanings.
I put him on speaker, went downstairs calling my wife. "Marilyn, did...Read more
This week marks 75 years since Soviet troops stormed the gates of hell.
Hell was near a Polish town called Oswiecim. Hell was a place called Auschwitz.
Seven and a half decades later, the murder factory has all but passed from living memory, been swallowed by that great maw called history. So perhaps it feels distant to you, far removed in ...Read more
Dear Mr. So-Called President:
A few words in advance of your upcoming acquittal.
That that's how your impeachment trial will end is, as we all know, a foregone conclusion. The proverbial fix is in.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told us as much in December when he announced he was coordinating with the White House on your defense. "I'...Read more
Dear Stephen King:
I hope you'll indulge me as I try to explain something I suspect you still don't quite understand. Namely: why so many of us were so disappointed with your take on the lack of diversity in this year's Oscar nominations. As the white-dominated and male-centric list of contenders was announced and women and people of color ...Read more
Last week, the Mississippi Supreme Court upheld Willie Nash's sentence: 12 years for possession.
Of a cellphone.
Read it twice, if you want. It won't make any more sense the second time around.
Nash, it should go without saying, is African American. And his victimization by Mississippi "justice...Read more
So what in the world just happened here?
That's the question of the moment as we struggle to get our heads around the latest head-snapping episode in the bizarre presidency of Donald Trump. In the last few days, we've seen: 1) a U.S. drone strike in Iraq, killing Qassem Soleimani, commander of Iran's elite Quds Force; 2) Trump's justification ...Read more
My favorite picture of John Lewis is a mugshot.
It's from Mississippi in 1961, one of the earliest of an eventual 40-plus arrests he would undergo in the cause of freedom. Facing the state penitentiary in Parchman, Mississippi, and the many hells that portended for a black man in the Jim Crow South, Lewis looked into the camera ... and smiled. ...Read more
I'm here to say goodbye to Stephen King.
Not that he's going anywhere. Indeed, I imagine he's at his desk even now, devising a fiendish fate for some schmuck unlucky enough to be a character in a Stephen King novel.
But whatever that fate may be, I will know nothing about it -- not this year, at least. I will be similarly ignorant of whatever ...Read more
Pity poor Republicans. They have only one argument left to defend Donald Trump for abusing the powers of the presidency by inviting a foreign power to intervene in an American election, the one transgression our Founding Fathers feared most. Even now that he's covered in disgrace as only the third president in our history to be impeached, it's ...Read more
He was the last of the firsts.
That's probably how Richard Gordon Hatcher, one of the nation's first black elected big-city mayors, most often will be remembered.
Hatcher died December 13 at age 86 in Mercy Hospital and Medical Center in Chicago. He was elected mayor of Gary at ...Read more
While Mr. Pitts is away Carl Hiaasen is filling in.
Harvey Weinstein, once one of the most brash and powerful men in Hollywood, has lately been having issues with his ankle bracelet.
The shunned former movie producer is wearing a court-ordered monitor while he awaits trial for allegedly raping one woman and forcing another to let him ...Read more