Steve Hochstadt: Honoring “great men” is often made possible only by ignoring the ambiguities which made them human, but not so great.
Steve Hochstadt: As grass-roots organizations, unions are feared by dictators. All of the world’s dictatorships, whether left or right, have banned free unions.
Steve Hochstadt: Being a good citizen is not mainly participating in elections every November. It means thinking about our neighbors every day.
Steve Hochstadt: Little depends on what we in the U.S. do. Our best bet is to offer support to democratic institutions, no matter who the likely winner of a free vote might be.
Steve Hochstadt: Is Hollywood trying to push a gay agenda on right-thinking Americans, as some people claim? I think it’s the other way around: Hollywood is trying to sell products.
Steve Hochstadt: New polls about high capacity magazines show that nearly two-thirds favor banning their sale. A minority of Americans, consistently about a third, favor banning the sale of all handguns, except to police.
Steve Hochstadt: It disturbs some conservatives no end that Americans who teach in colleges and universities tend not to share their ideas about evolution, global warming, and history. So dismiss the source: just look at where we work, and that should tell you all you need to know.
Steve Hochstadt: The voters spoke in November: They picked Quinn and a tax increase over Brady and no new taxes. One reason is that Brady could not identify for voters where he would cut much spending. The opponents of taxes did not propose any reasonable alternative to raising taxes to solve Illinois’ debt crisis.
Steve Hochstadt: What does matter in 2011 is that mainstream libertarians and conservatives think a film that portrays Jews as evil monsters bent on world domination is worth showing, praising, and promoting. After decades of retreat, the antisemitism of Ford and Coughlin, and of the Nazis, is back, on a screen near you.
Steve Hochstadt: Ending discrimination will not be achieved through a new military policy nor by new laws. Such political acts reflect an evolving popular understanding that America can prosper by defending equality.
Steve Hochstadt: Rather than make futile resolutions, I have been thinking about happiness. If I know what makes me happy, perhaps I can find more happiness this coming year.
Steve Hochstadt: We can’t create a perfect Christmas. But we can use this once-a-year moment to exchange gifts of love, to celebrate what we have and what we are.