Laura Hollis from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Thu, 02 Jul 2020 15:38:35 -0700 Laura Hollis from Creators Syndicate 506cd70be03d8c2e2adbfa9c55709cf8 Lessons Learned for 07/02/2020 Thu, 02 Jul 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The last few weeks have provided plenty of support for the political positions traditionally espoused by conservatives. Some of the evidence is so painfully obvious it's hard to believe there could be any dispute about it. And yet, disputes there are. In fact, the divisions in this country seem deeper than ever. As we approach the November election and beyond, it is vital that we understand the lessons current events teach us about what we're facing in our future. Here's a short and (very) incomplete list:</p> <p>1. Our governments are shockingly weak. COVID-19 has revealed that the twin pillars of some city and state governments are hypocrisy and cowardice. Rules put in place to prevent the spread of the virus were strictly enforced when the would-be violators were Orthodox Jews and other worshippers, small-business owners and skateboarders. Ill and elderly people died alone, their loved ones forbidden from visiting them in hospitals and long-term care facilities. These sacrifices, we were told, were necessary to keep the public safe. But when the George Floyd protests exploded into the streets across the country, the narrative changed. "Social justice" became an exception to the infection rules, as if the virus would somehow distinguish between irate Black Lives Matter activists and frolicking beachgoers. <p>Updated: Thu Jul 02, 2020</p> 39f6c0b3b7c0787cf6916bf23df0b40f Don't Feed the Fire for 06/25/2020 Thu, 25 Jun 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Cancel culture is exploding across the country, with predictably disastrous effects. First, the statues of the Confederacy started coming down. Even among those who declared this to be justified and overdue, voices warned that it wouldn't stop there if "removal by riot" were to become the modus operandi.</p> <p>In fact, it did not stop there. In the aftermath of the George Floyd and Raychard Brooks protests, riots and civil unrest, other monuments have come under attack in cities across the country including statues of U.S. Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Ulysses S. Grant and Theodore Roosevelt; national anthem author Francis Scott Key; explorer Christopher Columbus; and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill (who <i> legitimately </i> battled fascism). Vandals have also defaced or destroyed memorials of slavery abolitionists, fallen World War I and World War II soldiers, Mahatma Gandhi, the Armenian genocide, America's first responders and Black soldiers who died fighting in the Civil War.<p>Updated: Thu Jun 25, 2020</p> bb947378e775580216056518afcf2705 Why Have Congress? for 06/18/2020 Thu, 18 Jun 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>This past week, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its decision in Bostock v. Clayton County. Hailed as a landmark decision for LGBT Americans, the 6-3 opinion written by Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch concludes that the use of the word "sex" in Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act protects gay and transgender people from workplace discrimination.</p> <p>This seems like a straightforward question with an easy answer: Should gay and transgender people be discriminated against in hiring and firing decisions? Most would say no. Why should a bank teller be fired for being gay? Why shouldn't an accounting firm hire a qualified, competent CPA without regard to how he or she identifies?<p>Updated: Thu Jun 18, 2020</p> 179ed5ee6ab509aae39ee8525a33e612 No One Is listening to the American People -- Still for 06/11/2020 Thu, 11 Jun 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>I am watching the various classes of America's "elites" &#8212; politicians, commentators, academics, activists, Hollywood big mouths and corporate CEOs &#8212; drive this country deeper into conflict for the sake of their own personal aggrandizement and profit, and it is disgusting. </p> <p>If you're on Twitter, Facebook or anywhere else (even during a pandemic), you can read, watch or hear Americans speak for themselves, and there are many common threads:<p>Updated: Thu Jun 11, 2020</p> 07b4cab6d09f5da888323694a5df7e38 Collective Guilt Is a Catastrophic Mistake for 06/04/2020 Thu, 04 Jun 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>During my lifetime, the national conversation about race has gradually moved from culpability for individual behavior to culpability for ideology to collective culpability without regard to behavior or ideology. </p> <p>This transition is significant. It is deliberate. And it is dangerous.<p>Updated: Thu Jun 04, 2020</p> 13bd008000c77799b86321979c786e71 Lack of Vote-Integrity Measures Disenfranchises Voters for 05/28/2020 Thu, 28 May 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The political impact of the COVID-19 pandemic appears to be as unpredictable as the virus itself, and as potentially monumental as the financial losses it has caused. Although the November election is still almost five months away, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is leading the charge for states to have mandatory mail-in ballots, purportedly in the interests of public safety.</p> <p>Some people &#8212; including the ever-vocal President Donald Trump &#8212; view mandatory mail-in voting as a prescription for widespread voter fraud. Unsurprisingly, those arguing in <i> favor </i> of these voting changes denounce warnings against mail-in ballots as false and a thinly veiled ruse for opponents' "real" motives: to disenfranchise voters. In fact, this has opened a new front in the ongoing social media battles between Trump and the left. Twitter finally caved to pressure to "fact-check" Trump's tweets, starting with his recent tweet about voter fraud. (No word yet on whether they'll be fact-checking former President Barack Obama's tweets, or presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden's, or those of the major media.)<p>Updated: Thu May 28, 2020</p> 504e5e0e55b0fd00a7ec86428af213f0 Live By the Lie. Die by the Lie for 05/21/2020 Thu, 21 May 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p><span style="background-color: initial;">As I have on numerous occasions, last week, I wrote about the double standard that has become prevalent in the United States and the media's role in perpetuating that duality. Republicans, conservatives and others on the right must expect to endure false accusations, character smears and denial of due process. <span class="column--highlighted-text">Those on the political left, it seems, can engage in acts of unlawful misconduct and moral turpitude with impunity.</span></span><br></p> <p>Former President Barack Obama's administration was particularly culpable. The Exempt Organizations Unit of the IRS, run by Lois Lerner at the time, held up the applications of conservative nonprofits for <i> years </i>. Obama's ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice lied to the American public on national television about the Benghazi terrorist attack. Declassified documents have revealed that Andrew McCabe (former deputy director of the FBI), Samantha Power (Obama's second ambassador to the United Nations), James Clapper (Obama's director of national intelligence), James Comey (former FBI director) and John Brennan (CIA director under Obama) all lied to Congress during investigations associated with the "Russiagate" probe. Obama's attorney general, Eric Holder, was even held in contempt of Congress for the investigation into Operation Fast and Furious of U.S. gunrunning into Mexico. <p>Updated: Thu May 21, 2020</p> cf5e88f24e61e2c4a9e3fff5ae62e607 A Tale of Two Sets of Rules for 05/14/2020 Thu, 14 May 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>With each passing day, it becomes clearer that the United States has two sets of rules: one for the elites in the Democratic Party, the media and the entertainment industry, and a different one for Republicans and us poor slobs in flyover country.</p> <p>Take the COVID-19 lockdown. While our economy goes into free fall, we're told by politicians that businesses must stay closed, and everyone must stay home and engage in social distancing. Illinois, for example, is on lockdown until the end of this month, per Democratic Gov. Jay Pritzger's orders. Meanwhile, Pritzger's wife jets off to Florida. And Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (also a Democrat) gets to go to the salon to have her hair done. The press exaggerates and misstates President Donald Trump's every utterance but ignores House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's absurd invitation to go visit Chinatown in San Francisco at the outset of the global pandemic, and forgives New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's earlier order requiring nursing homes &#8212; which have suffered the highest death rates from the virus &#8212; to take in coronavirus patients.<p>Updated: Thu May 14, 2020</p> 314dbc9cfb36f676d065c43893f74e7a Life in America Has Always Had Risks for 04/30/2020 Thu, 30 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p>The country has survived the COVID-19 shutdowns &#8212; so far. But it won't likely survive another major trauma to the system. There are those, like it or not, who anticipate such a result with some relish, as it presents opportunities for them to remake the nation into something they prefer, politically and economically. They get "cover," as it were, from those who call for much longer shutdowns, and who warn that life "will never be the same again." </p> <p>There are people of all persuasions who want to seize the reins of power and purport to shape all policy around the avoidance of risk. They may pitch this as "doing what we do as Americans." But that is as un-American a notion as it is possible to articulate.</p> <p>This country &#8212; like most &#8212; was <i> formed </i> by risk: the risks of separating from what was then the most powerful empire on the planet; the risks of instituting a form of government and an economy that depended upon the virtue, decisions and self-interest of free people; the risks of carving a nation out of a wilderness and climate that could be brutal and deadly; the risks of accepting from all over the world people who had neither language nor culture nor history in common but who sought the opportunity to fashion their own lives; the risks of new inventions; the risks of taking the human impulse to explore beyond the planet.<p>Updated: Thu Apr 30, 2020</p> 818f25c0c2dcf25d397986b6332173a3 Attack on Home Schooling Is the Left's Latest Way of Silencing Conservatives for 04/23/2020 Thu, 23 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Harvard Magazine published a truly awful article this past week in which Elizabeth Bartholet, a Harvard Law School professor and the director of its Child Advocacy Program, comes out strongly against home schooling. Bartholet's interview is a smorgasbord of selective outrage and red herrings. She points to isolated instances of neglect by home-schooling parents (mentioning exactly <i> one </i> example) but conveniently ignores shocking evidence of widespread sexual abuse and physical violence in America's public schools (1.1 million <i> serious </i> incidents, according to a 2016 report originally published under then-President Barack Obama's administration).</p> <p>Bartholet also ignores the reams of evidence demonstrating that home-schooled children do <i> better </i> academically, socially and professionally than their public-schooled peers.<p>Updated: Thu Apr 23, 2020</p> a97c91f6c8d15f749f15e677231a2f77 The Press Is a Threat to the Country for 04/16/2020 Thu, 16 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>And the national press wonders why it is mistrusted, and even despised?</p> <p>Sen. Tom Cotton was among the first to suggest that the information China was releasing regarding the novel coronavirus emerging from Wuhan might be inaccurate. Cotton raised the specter that the Chinese national virology laboratory in Wuhan could have played a role &#8212; even if inadvertent. For that, he was ridiculed. Cotton is a Republican, so his statement was the press's cue to trot out the tropes: This was just some wacky conspiracy theory. His accusations have already been "debunked." He's a war hawk pitching a "fringe theory" bought into by all the other right-wing kooks who also suspect foul play or grievous error in China.<p>Updated: Thu Apr 16, 2020</p> c4c9656cec7adc0e8e625a1658e94263 In Praise of Age for 04/09/2020 Thu, 09 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>When I was young, my mother subscribed to Harper's Bazaar magazine. I devoured it every month, but I particularly looked forward to the annual "Over 40 and Fabulous" issue. Each year in that special issue, the magazine would feature &#8212; on the cover and inside &#8212; beautiful, accomplished and talented women in their 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s and even 80s. I can vividly remember being a teenager and poring over photos of and interviews with women like Sophia Loren, Elizabeth Taylor, Lena Horne and Carmen Dell'Orefice. Their joie de vivre was infectious. Their self-assurance was inspiring. Some, of course, had indulged in a bit of medical intervention to keep themselves looking spry. Others &#8212; European women in particular, I recall noting &#8212; were more accepting of the changes that time wrought on face and body. But what captivated me most was that they no longer let society define them. They were flourishing at a time in their lives when one would have thought they had nothing left to offer &#8212; at least if one paid much attention to popular culture, which I did. Even at that young age, I could understand the limitations of our culture's obsession with youth. If "beauty" ends at 25 and career goals had to be accomplished by age 30, what did you do with the rest of your life?</p> <p>That magazine changed my perspective on aging. Each year, I renewed a vow that I maintain to this day: <i> As long as there are women older than I whom I can admire, I will always have something to look forward to. </i> There are, and I do.<p>Updated: Thu Apr 09, 2020</p> 071aa7b2da37b987c310ae84f855fb50 Things to Be Grateful for for 04/02/2020 Thu, 02 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Even in the throes of a global pandemic, it's possible to find things to be grateful for. In fact, I would argue that we are doing things and appreciating things that we really should have been doing and appreciating all along.</p> <p>I'm sure everyone has their own list of things they're grateful for. Here's mine:<p>Updated: Thu Apr 02, 2020</p> 8d577c3a4102811a5e3bb2d7e7be254e This Is What Disruption Looks Like for 03/26/2020 Thu, 26 Mar 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The global coronavirus pandemic has thrown the United States (like most of the rest of the world) into a sort of quasi-organized chaos. All across the country, businesses, health care systems, governments and schools have been disrupted. In my own field of higher education, most colleges and universities have been forced to close live, in-person classes and move entirely to online instruction.</p> <p>As someone who teaches courses in entrepreneurship and innovation, this is a riveting phenomenon to watch, a case study unfolding in real time.<p>Updated: Thu Mar 26, 2020</p> dfb056ccc27e0e660a3335cbd04f7af0 We Are Living in a 'Loaves and Fishes' Moment for 03/19/2020 Thu, 19 Mar 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>There are three accounts in the New Testament of Jesus Christ feeding a multitude of people with a handful of loaves of bread and a few small fish. In the Gospel of Matthew, the number of people is listed as 4,000. In the Gospels of Luke and Mark, the number is stated to be 5,000.</p> <p>According to all three gospels, large crowds of people follow Jesus into a remote area, where he preaches to them for several hours. (The account in Matthew says that the crowds are with Jesus for "three days"). Christ's disciples advise him to send the crowds away to get food and drink. Christ tells his disciples to give the people something to eat. The disciples protest, saying that they have nowhere near enough food or money to feed so many people. When Christ asks his disciples how much food they themselves have, they point to a handful of loaves and an even smaller number of fish.<p>Updated: Thu Mar 19, 2020</p> 09403822017940a6884daf82b594dc9d Biden Gambit Reeks of Desperation for 03/05/2020 Thu, 05 Mar 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>After Super Tuesday, all the headlines are heralding former Vice President Joe Biden's remarkable "comeback" from dead in the water to front-runner and presumptive Democratic nominee.</p> <p>The New York Times' Frank Bruni called it "some kind of miracle."<p>Updated: Thu Mar 05, 2020</p> 6b41f181551b67d57d104272001e13cb American Socialists Don't Understand American Business for 02/27/2020 Thu, 27 Feb 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>At the heart of the rapidly spreading support for "socialism" in the United States is some pretty profound ignorance about business in the country.</p> <p>A recent article in Salon is a good example. Last weekend, the online mag published an excerpt from a new book by Micah Uetricht and Meagan Day titled "Bigger Than Bernie: How We Go From the Sanders Campaign to Democratic Socialism."<p>Updated: Thu Feb 27, 2020</p> bf75ba22dc0e0dd7b03271dbdc43b977 Medicare for Some ... Depending on Their Politics? for 02/20/2020 Thu, 20 Feb 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Twenty-three years ago, I was asked to give a talk to the New York City Bar Association as part of a symposium titled "Executioners, Jailers, Slave Trappers and the Law: What Role Should Morality Play in Judging?" I was charged with addressing what judges should do when faced with moral quandaries over issues like partial-birth abortion (also called "dilation and evacuation abortions," or "D&E abortions") and physician-assisted suicide. While I was discussing the present, the other panelists &#8212; most of whom were judges &#8212; were discussing the past (as in, "What should judges have done about slavery?" or "Should judges have taken stronger stances against fascism in Germany?").</p> <p>Observations I made back in 1997 strike me as even more significant now. I said: "How does an unjust law come into existence? How does an evil law come into existence? ... (These laws) do not come sweeping into our lives like a blizzard. They come in like cold air through cracks in a window. ... I must confess, I am particularly concerned by the modern advocacy for physician-assisted suicide at a time when we are also arguing for more government intervention, if not control, over the health care system. ... I am very concerned about the prospect of a faceless bureaucracy making decisions about the adequacy, the appropriateness and the finality of care. We all should be."<p>Updated: Thu Feb 20, 2020</p> a350b58a5d4dbd779b6e640168f15ede James Carville Is Right: Democrats Should Be Panicking for 02/13/2020 Thu, 13 Feb 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Legendary Democratic strategist James Carville was interviewed by Vox's Sean Illing last week after Carville's doom-and-gloom jeremiad on MSNBC got a lot of people's attention. In his inimitable fashion, Carville warned that Democrats' love affair with Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is sending the party hurtling toward resounding defeat in November.</p> <p>"Bernie Sanders isn't a Democrat," Carville insisted. "He's never been a Democrat. He's an ideologue." <p>Updated: Thu Feb 13, 2020</p> 1378e96908d4d00916ae08cafbe749ef State of Disunion for 02/06/2020 Thu, 06 Feb 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Anyone who has watched the English Parliament debate knows that &#8212; ceremonial forms of address notwithstanding &#8212; they can be a fairly raucous bunch, routinely shouting down opposing speakers, yelling out, "Hear, hear!" and even booing with some regularity. This includes events at which the prime minister speaks before Parliament.</p> <p>By contrast, debate in the United States Congress tends to be a comparatively staid and polite affair. (There have been notable exceptions. For example, in 1856, then-Rep. Preston Brooks, a pro-slavery Democrat from South Carolina, assaulted then-Sen. Charles Sumner, an abolitionist Republican from Massachusetts, hitting him repeatedly in the head with a heavy metal-topped cane, nearly killing him.)<p>Updated: Thu Feb 06, 2020</p>