First, a plea to non-hunting environmentalists to join sportsmen in the battle to preserve access to wildlife. Ordinary hunters seeking sport or food were not to blame for the near loss of the bison and the extinction of such species as the passenger pigeon, heath hen and Labrador duck.
Progressives understand that people can disagree with their government and still love their country and its ideals. The flag, as a symbol of the nation, is not owned by the administration in power, but by the people. We battle over what it means, but all Americans—across the political spectrum—have an equal right to claim the flag as their own.
We should show more understanding toward those who are disappointed, the critics said. We should not “rub it in.” We were “gloating.” We were “insensitive.” We should be “more gracious.” I leaned back from my computer in the wee hours of Wednesday morning and thought, “Why does this feel so familiar?”
So it was on a Sunday night, the 23rd of January, in 1977. Your black friends simmered like a pot left too long on the stove. Your white friends tiptoed past you like an unexploded bomb. We had all watched the first episode of “Roots.” Now we no longer knew how to talk to one another.
In the wake of the Brussels attacks, political pundits around the world have engaged in yet another round of discussion about the compatibility of Islam and the Western world. One of the new terms out of this latest process is “Reform Muslim,” which, like the term “moderate Muslim,” is an invention, offensive to the vast majority of Muslims who are neither reactionary, conservative, nor incapable of living among others.
David McCullough’s new book on the brothers brings them into sharper focus, and their story — one of thoughtful study, rigorous scientific experimentation and calm persistence, founded on sober Midwestern values — is worth knowing.
In a way, the “boys in blue and gray” also still live with us in the experiences of veterans returning home from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Caring for those who have borne the battle and for their families remains an urgent task.