Category Opinion

To Till a Field or Write a Poem? Booker T. Washington’s Legacy

In Honor of Black History Month Twenty-three years ago, I landed my first full-time college teaching position at Tuskegee University in Alabama. Originally known as Tuskegee Institute, the school was founded by Booker T. Washington in 1881 to provide vocational education for southern blacks in the years after Reconstruction. Washington, born a slave in 1856, would overcome enormous odds to become the most influential African American in the United States

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Protect the First Amendment: Save Net Neutrality

The United States, born through freedom by seceding from the British Crown in 1776, proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence that all persons are created equal and endowed with the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. In 1791, the Bill of Rights established this ideal in further detail by outlining Americans’ rights in relation to its government. The First Amendment states that Americans have freedom of

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Heir to Springsteen: Eric Church and the American Psyche

I teach a college course called United States History Since 1945. It’s a fun class because the students and I get to reflect on U.S. social, political, economic, and military history of the last seventy odd years. It’s one of those classes where I can show the hilarious episode of I Love Lucy called “Job Switching,” where Lucy and Ethel find work in a candy factory while Ricky and Fred

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Art Meets Realpolitik: Winston Churchill and Darkest Hour

Blowhard. Buffoon. Dotard. Egomaniac. Madman. Warmonger. If you’ve been following American political news lately, you might think I’m referencing the gossipy allegations from Michael Wolff’s new book about President Donald Trump that leftist media and anti-Trumpers have glommed on to in their latest quixotic attempts to find something—anything—tangible to confirm the view they’ve held since November 8, 2016, that a duly-elected president should be removed from office.  However, as viewers

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The Sydney Mardi Gras: A Riot of Beautiful Energy and Diversity

Despite facing intense adversity in its early stages, the Sydney Mardi Gras festival has become the largest annual event held in Sydney, Australia that celebrates the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual) community. The celebration is an explosion of color, creativity, and, most importantly, acceptance. The party lasts for three weeks and people from around the globe go to enjoy the parades, performances, and fairs, among other wild events. In a

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Scientific Puritans Aren’t Helping

All too often, superstitious thinkers have stood in the way of meaningful scientific innovation, and they still do. This is terrible given the serious theoretical and technical challenges we face. Fortunately, history shows that most major scientific discoveries that promised to serve humanity especially well were adopted despite fierce resistance from despotic religious interests. Ironically, now an unsettling number of materialists have become scientific Puritans. They assume that anything beyond

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