Walter Brasch: In the past, the media had their defects and biases, the nation’s media understood they were the system that helped assure a free and unencumbered forum for debate about major issues.
Rev. Irene Monroe: A mind is a terribly thing to waste. But for conservatives and Tea Party activists who want to indoctrinate our kids rather than to educate them, a mind is a terrible thing to have. Now with far-right activists like Glen Beck pushing for more Jesus and less Darwin — working to reshape the academic landscape in schools, colleges and universities across the country — we will soon know without having to wonder “Why Johnny Can’t Think Critically.”
David Love: On the issue of family values, whatever that means, the Republican’s policy paper condemns homosexuality and opposes the legalization of sodomy and supports a prohibition on all pornography and strip clubs. Further, they would make it a felony to issue a marriage license to a same-sex couple, or for a civil official to perform a same-sex marriage ceremony.
Mark Bowen: In baseball, as in life, we need people like Bud Selig to exercise their judgment as to when certain challenges have gone too far. But in baseball, as in life, we’ll eventually get to the point where our paranoia over imagined unintended consequences gives way to our recognition of the value of doing the job right.
Joseph Palermo: The wide dissemination of Beck’s views wouldn’t matter much if the United States were in better shape today. But the status quo that is emerging cannot help but create a highly volatile electorate for years to come. Class lines are hardening, mobility is stifled, unemployment will remain near double digits for many years, there is a sea of angry voters who are susceptible to jingoistic appeals and conspiracy theories (like the ones Beck promotes). The ongoing fiscal crisis at the local, state, and federal levels has led to the heartless rollback of public institutions at exactly the time when they are needed the most.
Ron Wolff: Oh, by the way, country and western music will be studied as a cultural movement. High school freshmen will probably be assigned the task of writing lyrics to twangy melodies — when they’re not studying about the Contract with America, the Heritage Foundation, the Moral Majority, and the National Rifle Association. Yes, they’re all “in.”
Berry Craig: Just in time for next year’s sesquicentennial observance of the start of the Civil War, the Texas Board of Education apparently wants new Lone Star State history books that favorably compare Jefferson Davis to Abraham Lincoln.