WJ Astore: This sacralization of the gun, its elevation as a totem of strength and virility, its hugely symbolic presence in American life, is an important reason why gun control efforts largely fail, even in the aftermath of horrendous mass shootings.
William J. Astore: Critical thinking skills are what is being elided and excluded in much of education today.
WJ Astore: It’s infuriating how men like Bannon attempt to squelch criticism of the president by hiding behind the troops.
WJ Astore: There was a time when Americans were proud of having a small standing military. There was a time when Americans were proud of protesting arms sales around the world by “merchants of death.” Those days ended with the Cold War.
WJ Astore: When it comes to the NFL, Trump should be flagged and ejected for unnecessary roughness.
WJ Astore: I’ve always liked Christ’s teachings on praying to God in private, rather than standing on a street corner and shouting your beliefs to the masses.
WJ Astore: What’s disconcerting in the U.S. media is the emphasis on the war as an American tragedy, when it was truly a horrific tragedy inflicted upon the peoples of Southeast Asia (Vietnamese, Laotians, Cambodians).
WJ Astore: President Trump is a different man. “His” generals have brought him under control. Criticism of the F-35 has gone away.
W.J. Astore: It’s piss-poor reasoning to argue that, because a lot of people have sacrificed and died in a war, the war should continue (with more people dying) to justify those previous sacrifices.
WJ Astore: For me, statues and monuments are a stimulus for reflection as well as education. Who was that guy on a horse? Why is he being honored? And what does that decision tell us about who we were and are as a people?
WJ Astore: Put simply, in American society it’s easier for a man to be almost anything than for a woman to be almost anything. Society “tells” women what is appropriate for their gender far more than it dictates to men.
W.J. Astore: Lifelong military officers favor military solutions to problems. That’s precisely why you want civilians to control them, and to counterbalance their military advice.
William J. Astore: A man of Trump’s vanity and impetuosity — a man of raging grievances who lives in his own reality of alternative facts — is hardly a reassuring figure to have at the top of America’s “fire and fury” nuclear arsenal.