Why America Needs Identity Politics

The debate about what lessons American progressives need to take from the 2016 election is just beginning. One of the first shots in that war was fired this month in an editorial by Mark Lilla, "The End of Identity Liberalism", that implores us to stop thinking or talking about race and gender so much. It leaves a lot to criticize:In recent years American liberalism has slipped into a kind of moral panic about racial, gender and sexual identity that has distorted liberalism's message and … [Read more...]

You Get What You Vote For

With a Republican Congress and president set to be seated in 2017, it's a good bet that all the coverage gains of Obamacare will be rolled back. Paul Ryan has been open about his desire to dismantle every piece of safety-net legislation since the Great Society, and it's likely that he's going to get his wish. That's very bad news for the residents of depressed Clay County, Kentucky:For Freida Lockaby, an unemployed 56-year-old woman who lives with her dog in an aging mobile home in … [Read more...]

The America I Thought I Knew

[Note: I've still got a lot of raw emotions, and this post is written in the spirit of catharsis. If that's not what you need right now, feel free to skip it. You may also like this one: Dear America, Stop Gaslighting Me]Over the last few days, I've been cycling back and forth through all the stages of grief, trying to come to terms with what's happened. I've come to realize that the reason that last week's election results were such a devastating and unexpected blow - even besides the … [Read more...]

Election 2016, Everybody Stop Freaking Out Edition

First things first: Vote. Vote. Vote. Vote for president. Vote in downballot races. Vote if you live in a swing state. Vote if you live in a safe state. Find your polling place. Make a plan for how and when you'll get there. Most of all, get out and vote. And after you've voted, if you have the time and the inclination, help others do it too: Phone bank. Knock doors. Help drive eligible voters to the polls.Have you done all that? Good. Now, here's what I have to say to liberals: For the love … [Read more...]

Hillary Clinton’s Silent Majority

With the 2016 presidential election less than a month away, Hillary Clinton has a commanding lead in the polls and in most swing states. In fact, she's been consistently in the lead this entire campaign. Barring some almost unimaginable last-minute change in the race, she's set to become the next president.Especially since decision day is so near, you'd think the media would find it worthwhile to delve into her base of support. Who's voting for Clinton and and why? What are their hopes and … [Read more...]

Women Deserve Equal Rights, Not Chivalry

Donald Trump's boasting about his ability to "grab [women] by the pussy" has opened the floodgates.Since those remarks came to light, corroborating stories are popping up all over. In a 2005 interview with Howard Stern, Trump chortled about how, at beauty pageants he owned, he would barge into the contestants' dressing rooms in the hope of seeing them naked. Five women in the Miss Teen USA pageant have confirmed that he did this to them - yes, peeping on teenagers.Other women have also … [Read more...]

When Should a President Prosecute Their Predecessor?

The standout moment at Sunday's debate had to be Donald Trump's thuggish threat to jail Hillary Clinton:"If I win," Donald Trump threatened Hillary Clinton during Sunday night's debate, "I am going to instruct my attorney general to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation... People have been, their lives have been destroyed for doing one fifth of what you have done. And it's a disgrace.""You know," Clinton later responded, "It's just awfully good that someone with the … [Read more...]

All the Kingdoms of the World

By now, you've heard, we've arrived at a new low in an election season that's seen no shortage of them. In 2005, Donald Trump was caught on a hot mic backstage at Access Hollywood, bragging about his ability to sexually assault women and get away with it, and we've just heard the tape:"I've got to use some Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her," Trump says. "You know I'm automatically attracted to beautiful [women] — I just start kissing them. It's like a magnet. Just kiss. I don't e … [Read more...]

We’re All In This Together: A Humanist Sermon

Certain recent events in my life have made me think about how human beings depend on each other. However privileged or fortunate you are, you're all but certain to eventually face a challenge you can't overcome alone and need other people's help to pull you through. And I don't just mean in a disaster or a crisis, but for everyday, ordinary things, the kind of situations that most of us can expect to encounter in the course of life.Having children is the perfect example, because it's such a … [Read more...]

Tell You The Truth? Not Our Job!

The American political media rarely rises above mediocrity. Even at the best of times, they're overly focused on horse-race coverage, personality clashes and false balance, to the detriment of informed coverage of the issues. But this campaign seems to be bringing some of their worst instincts to the forefront.This is especially visible in the seemingly endless stories about Hillary Clinton's use of a private e-mail server, or the Clinton Foundation and the nature of her involvement with it … [Read more...]