Steve Hochstadt: Below the surface of public statements about gun legislation, the NRA sells its members a disturbing critique of our society.
Peter Dreier: My baseball awakening — when I was old enough to realize that everyone had to have a favorite team — occurred the same year that the Giants won the World Series and had a collection of players who captured my imagination.
Lance Simmens: I had the opportunity to engage in a discussion with accomplished singer, song-writer Don Arbor recently about his latest project, Everyone Comes From Somewhere, a song inspired by a conversation he had with his mother’s caregiver, an immigrant from Guyana.
Tom Hall: Black Panther repeats sexist tropes about the visual presentation of women while giving them much more substance in the film’s society than is common in sci fi. Progress. Enough? No. But more than a lot of other “Hollywood” fare provides.
Steve Hochstadt: Barnum’s contradictory qualities as showman, hoaxer, anti-slavery activist and politician are too much to fit into a big budget spectacle, much less a family-oriented musical.
Caroline Heldman: We would live in a more loving world if everyone embraced Kwanzaa values, and this week of reflection can serve as an antidote to the personal and national toll of the hate-based Trump presidency.
Larry Wines: More baubles. More bling. More ostentatious expressions of your ability to buy expensive stuff you can’t afford, but that you must buy to show the Joneses you’re ahead of them in the pecking order of consumerism.
Abba Solomon: The film is a tribute to a richly isolated moment in Jewish American history, when, reputedly, the Lower East Side became the most densely populated place on earth outside Asia.
Jack Rothman: Basically, stand-up and the idea of what is funny changed from Alan King and Henny Youngman to Lenny Bruce and Richard Pryor, from kid-around-jesters to agitated satirists and social critics.
Several years ago, shortly after his short-story collection The Tenth of September appeared, he told an interviewer that he hoped his fiction fostered empathy by inducing in readers a sort of “temporary mind-meld” with certain characters.
In the newly published tween novel by Marcy Winograd and Jackie Hirtz, 11 year-old Lola Zola becomes a super sleuth to save her struggling town from a swindler who promises to “make America greater than great again.”
Steve Hochstadt: This crazy election is only a week away. I need relief and find that my dogs ease political stress. Their simpler lives are not affected by politics and they help me recognize what is important in this life.
Ed Rampell: Among those things the GOP nominee presumably doesn’t want voters informed about is the sound and fury that surrounded Trump International Hotel and Tower at Waikiki Beach Walk