From the Left

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Politics

Let's give them something to howl about

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Gerald Ford was right. It was years before I understood that.

I was 17 years old on the day in 1974 when the 38th president pardoned the 37th, Richard Nixon, for his crimes in the Watergate affair. Like millions of others — like Ford’s own press secretary, who resigned in protest — I was disgusted by this largesse.

It wasn’t until ...Read more

I am not disappointed in Donald Trump

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

I am not disappointed in Donald Trump.

For there to be disappointment at childish behavior presumes an expectation of adult behavior. No such expectation exists where Trump is concerned. So his weeks of sulking and floating bizarre conspiracy theories since he lost the election, while embarrassing in the extreme, doesn’t really let me down so...Read more

Greed is only greed

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Greed is good.

That, you may recall, was the mantra of corporate raider Gordon Gekko in the 1987 film, “Wall Street.” It came to symbolize the rapacious gluttony of that era - and its rejection of the dewy-eyed idealism of the 1960s.

Well, 1987 was a long time ago, but Gekko’s cynical watchword feels as timely now as it ever did. ...Read more

Truth gets the final word

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

“The coronavirus is the common cold, folks.” — Rush Limbaugh

“One day, it’s like a miracle — it will disappear.” — Donald Trump

“The risk to the average person does remain quite low” — Laura Ingraham

The American death toll from the novel coronavirus will soon pass 250,000. That’s a quarter of a million people lying ...Read more

Don’t let the doorknob hit’cha where the good Lord split’cha

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Dear Price Wallace:

There was a time I would have reasoned with you. There was a time I might even have pleaded.

Back then, I’d have been shocked and appalled to see a Mississippi state lawmaker advocate secession from the Union as you did in a Twitter exchange with former state representative Robert Foster a few hours after the presidential...Read more

Acknowledging a bitter defeat is never easy

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

We turn, one last time, to Hans Christian Andersen.

Over the past four years, many observers, this one included, have found one of the Danish writer’s most famous tales irresistible for explaining both Donald Trump and the Republican Party’s slavish sycophancy toward him. In “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” a monarch parades through town ...Read more

What about what’s good for us?

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Allow me to explain.

On Thursday night as a Biden victory was beginning to look inevitable, I had a brief Twitter exchange with a Republican blogger who complained that, in cheering the fall of Donald Trump, the “media elite” were “insulting those who supported him.”

Let’s just say I wasn’t sympathetic.

Whereupon someone else ...Read more

The election of 2020 has ended at last

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Forgive me for being the ant at the picnic.

Certainly, this is a glad moment, an ecstatic and delirious moment. The election of 2020 has ended at last. Joe Biden is finally the president-elect and Donald Trump is finally consigned to the dank well of ignominy he so richly deserves.

As Gerald Ford once said in the aftermath of a less dire ...Read more

Springsteen wrestles with death

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Bruce Springsteen is wrestling with death.

You hear him as you float high above leafless trees dusted with snow. The scene, captured in creamy tones of black and white, is one of beauty almost unbearably elegiac, sacred in its stillness. Then he speaks, giving words to a truth all too familiar to anyone who has lived long enough to see skin ...Read more

Happy endings in US history are not guaranteed

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

America is not guaranteed.

There is, in other words, nothing foreordained about this country someday returning to anything approximating normal. That’s important to keep in mind as we await results of the most critical U.S. election since 1860, when Abraham Lincoln came to power in an America pulling apart. Not unlike the America we live in ...Read more

Dear Jared Kushner...

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Dear Jared Kushner:

So I see where you think you’ve figured out what’s wrong with Black people. Monday, you shared it on Fox “News.”

”One thing we’ve seen in a lot of the Black community,” you said, “which is mostly Democrat, is that President Trump’s policies are the policies that can help people break out of the problems ...Read more

I’m here to endorse a candidate

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Allow me, please, a point of personal privilege.

Folks keep telling me how easy Donald Trump has made my job. For four years, I’ve had these discussions where we ruminate on the singular awfulness of that man and then the other person says, by way of consolation, “At least you never have to worry about finding something to write about.”

...Read more

We will not forget

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

You did not stand up.

Granted, America faced neither enemy bombers nor terrorist plot, but the threat to her was — still is — no less real. Your country needed you.

And you did not stand up.

You told yourself party was more important. You told yourself the courts were more important. You told yourself tax cuts were more important. And you...Read more

Living in an era where misinformation is weaponized

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

“Jared Kushner is under federal investigation for diverting money to terrorist organizations according to a guy I met at the gas station who told me he works for the FBI” is something I would never be allowed to publish.

“Donald Trump Jr. has an escalating cocaine dependency problem according to a woman I ran into at the supermarket who ...Read more

Whitmer plot involved white cultural entitlement

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

White people often do not understand white people.

Granted, that’s a counterintuitive claim. But it is regularly reinforced whenever one hears decent white Americans attempt to rationalize the misbehavior of their less decent kin.

One such effort turned up on social media a few days ago. Walker Bragman, a freelance journalist for, among ...Read more

Trump’s order discourages discussion of race and gender

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

“I didn’t know.”

Those were the first words my friend, a white guy named Dave, spoke to me the day after the first episode of “Roots,” which depicted the capture and enslavement of an African boy named Kunta Kinte. This was 43 years ago.

So you can perhaps imagine my frustration last year when the HBO miniseries “Watchmen” ...Read more

The Trump show must go on

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

“Are you not entertained?” — Maximus, in “Gladiator”

It helps if you think of it as a show.

Certainly, that’s the way the man in the middle of it does. So just consider last weekend the latest bizarre episode in Season Four of the Donald Trump presidency. Call it “The One With COVID-19.”

Granted, it’s a favored conservative ...Read more

We expect better of Joe Biden

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Asked about race at last week’s presidential debate, one candidate gave a very disappointing answer.

The other was Donald Trump.

Which is not to suggest Trump had satisfactory answers. To the contrary, asked by moderator Chris Wallace why America should trust him to heal its racial wounds, he was, as is his norm, nonsensical and miles wide ...Read more

What is the moral response when bad things happen to bad people?

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

“Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Galatians 6:7

I received the news that Donald Trump and his wife had been diagnosed with COVID-19 in a text from a family member. It came with 31 laughing emojis, the kind with tears squeezing out of both eyes.

“It is what it is,” I texted back. This, of course, was an echo of Trump��...Read more

There is a fire in the house of democracy

From the Left / Leonard Pitts Jr. /

Just last week, the headlines were inescapable.

They stemmed from a story in The Atlantic detailing what amounts to the Republican Party plotting a coup. Which is to say, cooking up Electoral College schemes designed to keep Donald Trump in office even if voters turn him out. Even worse, Trump himself explicitly refused to say he would respect ...Read more

 

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