SAG HARBOR, N.Y. — Everybody wants to save the children. It’s the cliche that tipped the point that jumped the shark in a perfect storm.
Now would be a very good time to be a cartoonist. Or perhaps not. As the late cartoonist Doug Marlette frequently lamented, “How do you cartoon a cartoon? We’re living in ‘Toon Town.’”
It is hard to think largely about the sweep of events when one is reacting instantaneously to breaking ... tweets.
The turmoil in Egypt has been a lesson in the fragility of a right we so often take for granted: to speak.
He didn’t say it. That word: “exceptional.” Barack Obama described an exceptional nation in his State of the Union address, but he studiously avoided using the word conservatives long to hear.
As a longtime champion of greater civility in public discourse and one who has led the charge for dialed-back rhetoric, may I respectfully take most of it back?
NEW YORK — It is bracing, not to mention annoying, laughable and obnoxious, to hear a White House press secretary lectured by a Russian journalist about the parameters of free expression American-style.
While sorting through the perennial lip-pursing tempest about a certain word in Mark Twain’s “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” — the “N-word,” as we now say it — I turned for inspiration to the master himself.
Thanks to WikiLeaks, even Vlad the Putin can raise an eyebrow and presume to know more about founding American principles, democracy and free speech.
Two words: Narrative, schmarrative.
NEW YORK — In 1991, the world divided itself in two camps: those who believed Anita Hill and those who didn’t. I fell somewhere in the middle: She may have told the truth, but so what?
Fair is foul, and foul is fair. There’s something witchy in the air.
NEW YORK — If you haven’t been humming tunes from “Les Miserables,” you haven’t seen “Inside Job,” the new documentary about how our economic crisis evolved.
The suicide of an 18-year-old Rutgers University student following an unimaginable invasion of his privacy has launched an overdue examination of casual — and possibly criminal — disregard for others’ personal space.
NEW YORK — After living in New York City for a few weeks, I’ve reached a few conclusions about the great political divide in America.
Of course I knew it all along. President Barack Obama is a Kenyan anti-colonialist and that’s why he doesn’t get us. He’s a ticked-off African.
NEW YORK — How worried are Democrats? V-E-R-Y.
August finally redeemed itself from shark-jumping hysteria with an original, spontaneous, transcendent event — the accidental intersection of one Antoine Dodson, his sister, her would-be rapist, and some musical magicians who tapped into that uniquely American reservoir of salvation — irreverence.
As I was perusing headlines that seem seldom to change -- mosque, immigration, sacred ground, 9/11, more mosque -- an unlikely trio intruded upon my malaise: Paul Newman, Rodney King and John Lennon.
As I was perusing headlines that seem seldom to change — mosque, immigration, sacred ground, 9/11, more mosque — an unlikely trio intruded upon my malaise: Paul Newman, Rodney King and John Lennon.
NEW YORK — It is hard to imagine that anything has gone unsaid about the so-called ground zero mosque, but we seem to be missing an important point.
Observing the Michelle Obama vacation controversy unfold, one is of multiple minds.
We’ve heard much these past few years about “small town values,” most recently iterated and personified by Sarah Palin.
When people think of New Orleans, most think of jazz, hurricane cocktails, Katrina — and now the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
The current Journolist controversy that has the blogosphere heaving sparks, and Washington even more self-absorbed than usual, is weak tea — a tempest in Barbie’s teacup.
It is often said that there are no new stories, just different ways of telling the same ones. Familiar plots persist through literature: man versus nature, “rags to riches,” the hero quest, and so on.
Fifty years ago today, a novel hit America’s bookshelves that changed the way millions thought about race and the inexplicable South.
Sometimes it takes a scientific study to reveal the obvious. The latest discovery — that touch influences how we perceive things — is something like the warning on a steaming cup of coffee.
If Bill Clinton was our first black president, as Toni Morrison once proclaimed, then Barack Obama may be our first woman president.
In the catalog of life-altering surprises, few compare to the query that came my way a few weeks ago from CNN/US President Jon Klein: “How would you like to co-anchor a prime-time show on CNN?”
Proving one’s feminist bona fides has become the latest challenge for women aspiring to public office.
Amid all the dark news from Afghanistan, every now and then a sliver of light slips through the cracks.
The Pentagon doesn’t want it. Defense Secretary Robert Gates says it’s unnecessary. Former President George W. Bush was against it, as is Barack Obama, who has threatened to veto a defense authorization bill that includes it.
I have a thing for Marines, always have. It began a long time ago when I watched my older brother amble away in the night toward his barracks at Camp Pendleton near San Diego.
The magnificent author and son of the Great Santini, Pat Conroy, began "The Prince of Tides" with these words: "My wound is geography. It is also my anchorage, my port of call."
No one doubts the sincerity or power of the tea party movement anymore. We get it: free market principles, limited government and individual liberty.
Some things are too horrific to consider, and yet consider them we must.
One of President Barack Obama's consistent education themes has been the wish that every child cross paths with that one teacher who hits the light switch and changes one's life.
When you're Michael Steele, there's no waking up and thinking: Ahhhh, at least the worst is over.
What a difference $2,000 in a lesbian bondage strip club makes.
As Democrats consider shoving health care reform through the House with a process known as "deem and pass," it is helpful to return to square one and ask: What, again, is the rush?
Skipping through the Candy Land of the health care bill, one is tempted to hum a few bars of "Let Me Call You Sweetheart."
For all our bemoaning the tortures of health care reform, the debate has been healthy for the nation.
WASHINGTON The RINO hunt is back on and the coveted trophy is Scott Brown.
Mar-co, Mar-co, Mar-co.
In a time of constant calamity and crisis fatigue, proposed legislation in Uganda to execute gays passes through the American consciousness with the impact of a weather report.
WASHINGTON Much time and many volumes have been devoted to Freud's famous question What do women want? with little commensurate attention to the male counterpart.
My favorite thing about J.D. Salinger wasn't his seminal work or his most famous character, Holden Caulfield, but how little I knew of him, thanks to his relentless pursuit of privacy.