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Perpetrators & Victims, Humans All

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The terrorist attacks in Paris understandably generated much media attention, and from so many different angles. We learned about the Muslim community in France, about the quasi-feud between Isis and Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, about the foundational commitment of France to secularism and the limits they place on free speech, and about the state of counter-intelligence, to name just a few. One phrase, however, is found in many of these different reports, on the radio, the television and in print, that I find deeply disturbing.

Trade, Violence & Migration: Honduras

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Monday, I attended a briefing at the U.S. Capitol by Larry Cohen, President of the Communications Workers of America, and AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre, both of whom were part of a fact-finding mission to Honduras this past November. It turns out that the Catholic Church and the AFL-CIO are just about the only two organized groups in the U.S. who even discuss the root causes of immigration, and what can be done in both countries to improve the lives of our citizens.

The Dems Find Their Voice

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Last year, the Democrats could not agree on a unifying message and they paid the price at the polls. Pulled in different directions by special interest groups, they ended up focusing on issues of particular interest to slices of the electorate but never found their voice on the kind of kitchen table issues that were once the Democratic Party’s strong suit.

Silk Spanks Donohue

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Mark Silk at RNS writes on the differences between French and American attitudes towards language about religion, but rightly concludes that Bill Donohue of the Catholic League gets it wrong, blaming the victim in the case of Charlie Hebdo. What I do not get, what I have never gotten, is that satire only works when it is outrageous and, just so, not believable, although it succeeds when it touches on a deeper truth. This was the core issue in the famous case Falwell v. Flynt.

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