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CHARLIE SYKES: Pence on the Stand
SECRET POD🎧: The Old Man and the Participation Trophy 🔐
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JILL LAWRENCE: Lindsey Graham Wants a National Abortion Ban. Here’s What He Overlooks.
Senator Lindsey Graham has been pushing since 2015 for a national ban on abortion. “It’s a human rights issue. Does it really matter where you’re conceived?” he said Sunday on CNN.
But to the South Carolina Republican, it’s a human rights issue only for the fetus: “At 15 weeks, you have a developed heart and lungs. And to dismember a child at 15 weeks is a painful experience. It’s barbaric.”
You’ll notice what’s missing from his remarks: the human rights of women. And—if you want to talk about barbaric—as a Texas lawsuit makes clear, under the abortion restrictions that Texas and other states have been rushing to impose, the rights of pregnant women are being crushed. Take it from Amanda Zurawski, who testified Wednesday on Capitol Hill that her state’s laws nearly killed her.
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SONNY BUNCH: ‘The Covenant’ Review.
Perhaps it’s because of the pandemic disrupting movie cycles, or maybe it’s a function of the various dramas surrounding studios STX and MGM, or possibly audiences are just stuck on thinking of him as the Brit-gangster director. But I don’t think we really appreciate the versatility of director Guy Ritchie as demonstrated in his recent, excellent run.
Over the last four years, Ritchie has tackled four distinct genres and absolutely crushed all of them. First, The Gentlemen was something of a return to form for Ritchie after years in the big-budget stratosphere, a more modest, twisty, turny action-comedy in the mold of Snatch or Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.
Then he delivered what might be his late-period masterpiece, Wrath of Man, a darkly violent 1970s-style thriller, something like a mainstream S. Craig Zahler (Dragged Across Concrete) flick. Wrath was, compared to Ritchie’s other work, almost staid: The camera lingered on moments of brutality and the proceedings were bereft of his usual lighthearted touch.
MIKE ST. THOMAS: American Students Are Starving for Fiction and Poetry.
Several writers have recently called attention to the decline of literature in American schools. Nathan Heller’s much-circulated New Yorker article “The End of the English Major” examined the slow death of fiction and poetry in colleges and universities. In the New York Times, Pamela Paul responded to Heller by blaming the Common Core for killing high schoolers’ desire to read. In the Atlantic, novelist Katherine Marsh lamented the lack of stories being read to America’s elementary students. At all levels, it appears, our students are reading less and less.
All this fatalism about our country’s wavering commitment to teaching English is telling. Despite the apparent decline of stories in our schools, literature remains close to our hearts. We may click our tongues at the demise of other liberal arts—philosophy, say, or history—but we gnash our teeth about English.
Roundabout investigations… Turns out the “mistaken identity” cover for Brett Kavanaugh came from a fairly partial source. And it didn’t add up.
My father was a midwesterner! Ron DeSantis is turning the “my father was a milkman” trope into a regional thing. Will it work?
First May… Now June? as a launch for Ron DeSantis. If he ever gets to the launching pad. He seems intent on battling… Nikki Haley in the meantime? Bold strategy, Cotton. Major supporters are sounding the alarm.
Florida’s book-ban frenzy targets Nora Roberts… and she’s not happy.
Evicted, Homeless… And Working Full-Time. This is Nieshea Walker’s story.
“Resignation…” GOP donors are beginning to realize the costs of going along with giving Donald Trump power. You break it you bought it. (Literally!)
A federal court… Blocked Illinois’s “assault weapons” ban. I wrote about the issues it faced back in January.
Private equity devours Jenny Craig… The Australian-founded weight loss management titan met a predictable fate when private equity took over. Thanks for the jingles.
Breaking: Friend of Clarence Thomas writes he did nothing wrong.
VPNS are going mainstream… And so are their trust issues.
Wrecks and balances… The Oklahoma GOP is at war with itself.
“To save lives and do justice…” The family of Bijan Ghaisar, who was shot and killed by the U.S. Park Police near where I used to live, plan to use the $5 million settlement to reform policing. Sadly, AG Jason Miyares stopped the effort to hold the officers accountable.
Meanwhile, in the “Free State of Florida…” The cruelty is the point. A new proposal to make it a crime to associate with anyone who is not in the country legally.
Trump insults the U.S. Army… And Republican voters will let him get away with it.
The end of the James Corden era. Enjoy this late night visit from the late night fraternity, and James and Tom Cruise in… The Lion King?
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