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The NRA’s America

Even before the horrific attack in Orlando earlier this month, life in 21st century America had become intolerably, pervasively fearful. Our mad proliferation of guns, and the obscene loopholes that allow dangerous people to access them freely, are the most consistent engines of terror in our society today.

A killer for God

Here is the plain and dangerous truth facing the cosmopolitan world: In the opinion of many millions of Jews and Christians and Muslims, the Abrahamic God of the desert is a homophobe.

Gina Barreca: I’m not giving students ‘trigger warnings’

The day I’m forced to offer “trigger warnings” before teaching is the day I stop teaching. To insist that I, or any other teacher, warn students that the material in a class might upset them defeats the purpose of education. Colleges and universities must remain institutions that inflame curiosity and, by their very existence, disturb those who enter their gates.

Keeping Quinault language alive

Someone once asked me why the Quinault Indian Nation and other tribes across the country are intent on restoring and maintaining their culture rather than just assimilating entirely into the white culture. The same person wondered why is it important for us to dress in Native regalia and conduct tribal ceremonies. Why struggle to maintain our lifestyle as fishers, hunters and gatherers? Why build longhouses and canoes and participate in canoe journeys? Why take a strong interest in restoring our Native language? Why not just let our culture die and concentrate exclusively on adopting the ways of the dominant society?
 

Why students need algebra

In his recent book, “The Math Myth: And Other STEM Delusions,” political scientist Andrew Hacker argues, among other things, that we should not require high school students to take algebra.

Doyle McManus: Forecasting in the age of Trump

Ray Fair of Yale University says that if his election-forecasting model is correct, the Republican nominee is likely to win the presidency by a convincing margin. John Sides of George Washington University agrees; the “fundamentals,” he says, give the Republican about a 60 percent chance of winning. Alan Abramowitz of Emory University gives Republicans a solid shot at the White House too; his model gives the GOP the edge — but in “a very close election.”

Vegans bite the hand that feeds

If Steve Martin made a reboot of “L.A. Story,” the 1991 send-up of the city’s cultural absurdities, there would have to be a scene at Cafe Gratitude. The mini-chain of vegan restaurants offers patrons sandwiches on gluten-free amaranth and millet buns, a $25 probiotic shot, and an array of entrees and smoothies with names that are already parodies of themselves. On my first visit to one location, I felt silly ordering I Am Incredible, a smoothie made with kale, coconut milk, hempseeds, almond butter, maca, banana and vanilla bean. The server returned with the concoction, placed it before me, and said, “You Are Incredible” as he looked earnestly into my eyes.