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The Final Democratic Debate


The opening statements at last night’s Democratic presidential debate featured both candidates playing to type: Sen. Bernie Sanders delivered a jeremiad against the influence of money in politics and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton offered a more visionary, upbeat pitch, firmly focused on the future. These are both tropes that go back to the first decades of English settlement in the Western Hemisphere, with Sanders in the role of Cotton Mather and Clinton in the role of John Winthrop.

Puerto Rico Day at the Congress


Yesterday was Puerto Rico Day at the U.S. Congress. The 65th Infantry Regiment, known as the “Borinqueneers,” received the Congressional Gold Medal for their long service to the armed forces of the United States. And, in a different part of the Capitol building, negotiations began in earnest over legislation designed to help the island climb out of its fiscal and humanitarian crisis.

"Jackie Robinson": Race, Then & Now


The last two nights, PBS aired a four-hour documentary on the life of Jackie Robinson. Produced by Ken Burns the documentary was splendidly well done, allowing the complexities in Robinson’s life to emerge, complexities that were muted in the movie “42” which came out a few years back. What was fascinating, and very sad, was the realization that race continues to haunt American political and cultural life.

The Hardened Hearts of the Catholic Right


Most of the reactions to Amoris Laetitia, the apostolic exhortation delivered by Pope Francis last Friday, have been welcoming, which seems fitting seeing as the Holy Father calls on the Church to be more welcoming in the text. Even those bishops whom we suspect were in the minority at the synod have issued positive statements. That said, some of the responses have been remarkably negative.


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In This Issue

April 22-May 5, 2016


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