Campus scholars' perspectives on topical issues — in conversation with you

With Barr as his enabler, Trump has out-Nixoned Nixon

“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it sometimes rhymes,” Mark Twain is reputed to have said. My first job after law school was as an attorney at the U.S. Department of Justice. I reported for work September 1974, just weeks after Richard Nixon resigned. In the years leading up to his resignation, Nixon turned the Justice … Continue reading »

‘Bless you’

Even without coronavirus, we have enough coughs and colds to generate a lot of “bless yous.”  But what is the origin of this saying? Renaissance scientists, such as the sixteenth century Flemish anatomist Vesalius, were the first to start to dissect the human body. But the brain presented a problem. There were no chemicals to preserve … Continue reading »

Trump’s acquittal strips impeachment of all meaning

The impeachment process in the House and the Senate has come to a totally predictable conclusion and President Trump has not been removed from office. My great fear is that the wrong lessons will be drawn from this and will have dire consequences for the future: Trump did nothing wrong. Trump continues to claim that … Continue reading »

Didn’t vote? You’re in the majority

If I asked you to name the biggest political party in the United States, what would be your answer? You probably have two guesses that come to mind: the Democratic party or the Republican party. Well, it’s neither. It’s the party of Non-Voters. Let’s look at the last presidential election: 100 million Americans who were … Continue reading »

What Stevie Wonder’s ‘Happy Birthday’ means to me

Happy Birthday to ya! Happy Birthday to ya! Happy Birthday! The Stevie Wonder version of “Happy Birthday” is very popular in the Black community. We’ll appease people and sing the traditional version all the way through, then immediately bust out in the more enthusiastic rendition Stevie released in 1980. For a long time, I thought … Continue reading »