Laura Hollis from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Thu, 01 Oct 2020 06:02:09 -0700 Laura Hollis from Creators Syndicate 00f019d805d807c66dae957aab837b9a A Friendship for Our Times for 09/24/2020 Thu, 24 Sep 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>I've been thinking a great deal about the close friendship between Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. It puzzled &#8212; and sometimes even infuriated &#8212; their followers, but it is a model we should all follow, especially now. </p> <p>Some of the more distressing phenomena in contemporary American culture are the calls for people to put aside or end personal relationships &#8212; which should be far more important in our lives &#8212; because of political viewpoints &#8212; which should be far less so.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 24, 2020</p> 1f4a8bbe3d8732ce68c6eacb84280269 The Problem Isn't Netflix. The Problem Is Us for 09/17/2020 Thu, 17 Sep 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Netflix, the video streaming giant, is in hot water with at least some segments of the American public because of a French film it is currently showing called "Cuties" ("Mignonnes" in the original French). </p> <p>The film is about a group of 11-year-old girls in Paris who form a team to enter a dance competition. But this isn't ballet or jazz. It's twerking. <p>Updated: Thu Sep 17, 2020</p> 3db6854cc76a022f872a14cceddecd81 Democrats Playing the Long Con for 09/10/2020 Thu, 10 Sep 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>"Con" in this context is slang for "confidence game" &#8212; an effort to deceive or defraud someone, usually out of money or property. defines a "long con" this way: "an elaborate confidence game that develops in several stages over an extended period of time wherein the con man or swindler gains the victim's trust, often bypassing small profits with the goal of reaping a much larger payout in the final maneuver."</p> <p>The secret to the success of a "long con," the online entry continues, is "giving your marks" &#8212; the targets &#8212; "the illusion of control while you and your team manipulate their choices."<p>Updated: Thu Sep 10, 2020</p> 023ae815b9e482790fd1e96d01befd5f Lessons From Rwanda for 09/03/2020 Thu, 03 Sep 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Some years ago, Immaculee Ilibagiza wrote "Left to Tell," a poignant memoir about her experiences hiding during the Rwandan genocide of 1994. Over a period of three months during spring and summer that year, Rwandans of Hutu ethnicity slaughtered somewhere between 800,000 and a million Rwandans of Tutsi and Twa ethnicity. Ilibagiza only escaped that fate by hiding in her Hutu pastor's home; she and seven other women spent 91 days in a tiny bathroom, the door to which was obscured by a large armoire. Ilibagiza lost her entire family in the genocide, save for one brother who had been sent out of the country to attend school. </p> <p>What has been called the Rwandan Holocaust is notable, even among other mass atrocities, in that the slaughter was carried out largely by neighbors against neighbors, villagers against villagers. Armed with machetes and other crude weapons, Hutus went from home to home, brutally hacking to death people they had known and lived peacefully with for decades.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 03, 2020</p> dd026397bc0bc6cb317ca399ffc5adc5 Two Visions of America for 08/27/2020 Thu, 27 Aug 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Both during their conventions and outside of them, the Democratic and Republican Parties have shown the American public two visions of our country. And the contrast could not be starker. In order to analyze it, it's essential to separate facts from spin &#8212; particularly media spin, which has been divorced from reality for decades when it comes to Republican politicians and policies but has plumbed new depths of desperation and falsehood since Donald Trump was elected president in 2016.</p> <p>We're told by Democrats that the United States is an irredeemably racist country, and that "systemic racism" keeps Blacks and other Americans of color from achieving what they otherwise could. But Democrats don't explain Americans like Oprah Winfrey, former President Barack Obama, Sen. Kamala Harris, Colin Kaepernick, Kobe Bryant, Rep. Maxine Waters, LeBron James, Sydney Poitier and countless other Black activists, actors, athletes, teachers, firefighters, politicians, police officers and business owners who have, <i> despite </i> facing discrimination, uphill battles and more difficult odds, achieved incredible success. Either the "system" that was allegedly set up to keep those individuals from succeeding does a remarkably lousy job of it or there's more to the story.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 27, 2020</p> 021a7bf9da9474f132b76b4bafb9f3de It's Time to Rethink Campus Policies for 08/20/2020 Thu, 20 Aug 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>College students are not adults.</p> <p>There. I said it. <p>Updated: Thu Aug 20, 2020</p> 16ad5611a45ed7186c599fecd5ddda43 It's the Left That Politicizes Everything for 08/13/2020 Thu, 13 Aug 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Late last week, Thomas Friedman published an opinion piece in The New York Times titled "Beirut's Blast Is a Warning for America." The subhead says, "In this country, as in Lebanon, everything is now politics."</p> <p>Friedman intones ominously, "(W)hen everything is politics, everything is just about power. There is no center, only sides; no truth, only versions; no facts, only a contest of wills."</p> <p>I agree, so I read on for examples. And Friedman has them. But &#8212; ironically &#8212; they are exclusively opinions in opposition to leftist worldviews. "If you believe that climate change is real," he offers, "it must be because someone paid you off with a research grant. If you believe the president committed an impeachable offense trying to enlist the president of Ukraine to undermine Joe Biden, it's only because you want power for your party."<p>Updated: Thu Aug 13, 2020</p> eca30de6f8683dc306688c4bc0477f74 Let's Not Panic; Schools Should Reopen for 08/06/2020 Thu, 06 Aug 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p>As I write this, some schools across the country are beginning to reopen &#8212; albeit under serious restrictions necessitated by social distancing &#8212; for the 2020-2021 academic year. But the reopenings are patchy and inconsistent, and there is still much opposition. For example, here in South Bend, Indiana, where I live, we were told in July that school would start &#8212; online only &#8212; on Aug. 12 and gradually ease back to in-person classes by Aug. 31. Yesterday, it was announced that all K-12 schools will remain online only through Oct. 5. Whether live, in-person classes will resume after that will depend upon "current health data."</p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">It's unclear how much data is driving these decisions and how much of it is public sentiment. </span>Teachers unions in many cities have made clear their opposition to reopening schools. But plenty of parents and families have also expressed concerns.</p> <p>We are now a long way from February and March of this year, when our elected leaders told us that a temporary shutdown would be necessary to "flatten the curve" and avoid overtaxing our health care resources. The implicit assumption in those initial decisions was that yes, people would continue to be infected with COVID-19. Now the mere prospect of that is making people panic about sending their children back to school.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 06, 2020</p> 9e6a59cca94398b4a54c87392095f00c Time for the Press to End Its Love Affair With Marxism for 07/30/2020 Thu, 30 Jul 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>I watched director Agnieszka Holland's award-winning film "Mr. Jones" this week. It's truly outstanding, a quiet masterpiece about the young Welsh journalist Gareth Jones who risked his life to expose what is now called the Holomodor, the 1932-33 famine in Ukraine caused by the collectivist policies of Soviet dictator Josef Stalin.</p> <p>Aware of troubling rumors, Jones used his political connections as foreign policy advisor to English Prime Minister Lloyd George to get a visa into the Soviet Union &#8212; very difficult to do at the time &#8212; and, from Moscow, finagled his way onto a train into Ukraine, where he slipped past his handlers and spent two or three weeks traipsing from village to village. What he saw there seared his soul, and he recorded his observations in diaries that survived his untimely death (Jones was murdered in China on the eve of his 30th birthday).<p>Updated: Thu Jul 30, 2020</p> 982ed4d4b0fea6f93ca8c67c4752b963 If Unborn Lives Don't Matter, No Lives Matter for 07/23/2020 Thu, 23 Jul 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>For years, pro-life activists &#8212; including and especially African Americans involved in the pro-life cause &#8212; have called attention to Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger, and her deeply racist views.</p> <p>Sanger was an unabashed eugenicist who believed that entire races and classes of people were inferior and thus "unfit" to reproduce; their expanding birthrate was, in Sanger's view, "the greatest present menace to civilization." This included immigrants, those with mental illness, the poor, the "Asiatic races" and Blacks, who she called "human weeds."<p>Updated: Thu Jul 23, 2020</p> 2c280617bdc65c066406349fb76323f6 Entrepreneurship Is the Key to Equality for 07/16/2020 Thu, 16 Jul 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The Marxist agitators are out in force, chomping at the bit to bring about the destruction of the American way of life. They're certain they're going to get it right this time, exploiting (again) civil unrest and widespread concerns about injustice. </p> <p>But notwithstanding profound historical injustices like slavery, broken treaties with Native American tribes and deplorable factory working conditions during the Industrial Revolution, Americans have stubbornly refused to flock to collectivism as a solution.<p>Updated: Thu Jul 16, 2020</p> bf450a4149d2393c6e9c0cdefb97fa28 Little Crimes, Big Crimes for 07/09/2020 Thu, 09 Jul 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>"I can't imagine why you're bothering me when there's rioting in the streets." &#8212; Dr. Whiteface</p> <p>"Ah, well ... we shall deal with that later. But Captain Vimes always told me, sir, that there are big crimes and little crimes. Sometimes the little crimes look big and the big crimes you can hardly see, but the crucial thing is to decide which is which." &#8212; Corporal Carrot<p>Updated: Thu Jul 09, 2020</p> 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>