This week delivered calamities both unavoidable and avoidable. In the former category was the devastating series of tornadoes that swept through Moore, Oklahoma on Monday, killing 24, including 10 children. In the latter was the collapse of the Interstate 5 bridge over the Skagit River in Washington. The bridge's breakdown should come as no surprise, as it had been labeled "functionally obsolete" by the Federal Highway Administration. And we can expect more such tragedies, since one in nine bridges in America is considered "structurally deficient." The week also brought discussion of another avoidable calamity -- the negative impact civilian deaths from drone strikes is having on our national security. Unavoidable disasters will always be with us, which is why it's all the more important to avoid those we can, instead of pretending there's nothing to be done to prevent them.
This Memorial Day, I hope you will take a moment to offer your own gesture of thanks to our men and women serving abroad and at home, as well as their families, and take a moment to honor the service men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
Allow me please to take you back for a moment to the beginning of 2011. Remember how surprised the world was that, in just 18 days, a leaderless grass-root uprising managed to topple the Mubarak regime that had ruled Egypt with an iron fist for 30 years?
America has a spiritual problem when it protects guns rather than children. Why are we not all calling our legislators and expressing outrage? How can we let the voices of gun dealers and manufacturers drown out the cries of children?
Commencement speakers are traditionally expected to tell graduates how to go out there and climb the ladder of success, but I want to ask you, instead, to redefine success. Because the world you are headed into desperately needs it.
Those who bother to read these historical snippets will find many important departures and only tenuous parallels between the Obama Administration's IRS affair and Richard Nixon's Watergate-era IRS scandal.
Striking the right balance between the government's legitimate need for confidentiality, the press's legitimate need to obtain information about government action, and the public's "right to know" what its representatives are up to, is a difficult and delicate task.
When I think about how lucky I am that my husband survived, it only reinforces my dedication to taking action against this disease. My wish for every man faced with a cancer diagnosis is to have the same success story.
All these men are honorable. None has broken any law. But they and their ilk in congress -- the Democrats who are now rolling back Dodd-Frank -- don't seem to appreciate the extent to which Wall Street has harmed, and continues to harm, America.
Many feminists have rejected the notion that women can be sexist towards men because women lack the institutional power than men have. Except we know that's changing.
When we began work on Star Trek Into Darkness, we realized it would be released in May 2013, a moment when our nation would have the opportunity and responsibility to make sure we help these post-9/11 veterans transition back to jobs, higher education, or ongoing careers of service.
When I was a child, the only women you were likely to encounter on the front lines of America's military didn't wear uniforms. Instead, they wore high heels, hose and sequins. That's because these women -- such as Lucille Ball, Lena Horne and the Rockettes -- were not among our soldiers but, instead, part of the U.S.O.
Africa's Great Lakes region can silence the guns, boost trust and trade between neighbors, educate millions of out-of-school children, empower women, and create economic opportunities that will help the countries forge a path to prosperity, good governance, and lasting stability.
The message Disney sends to the public in changing Merida is that she is not good enough the way she is. In doing that, they are making the same statement to all the young girls out there.
Ever since the Keystone fight began, the smart money has insisted the pipeline will be approved. But so far: no pipe.
Force-feeding causes the birds' livers to balloon to up to 10 times their normal size and become diseased with what is known as hepatic steatosis. In addition to being miserably ill with a painful and debilitating disease, the geese can barely breathe because their grotesquely enlarged livers displace their lungs and other internal organs... geese can be seen panting constantly in a vain attempt to suck oxygen into their squashed lungs. Veterinarian Holly Cheever has compared what force-fed birds endure in their final days to being smothered.
Tavis Smiley is a STAR. Congratulations on 2,000 shows; here's wishing you 1,000 more! Hey, before you know it, you'll be in this game as long as me. Get ready to hold on to your suspenders!
Most Americans agree that coming to the United States legally should be easier and with less cost than coming to the country illegally. Unfortunately, right now, that is not the case.
It's 2023 -- and this is America 10 years after the first across-the-board federal budget cuts known as sequestration went into effect.
On Tuesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved a new comprehensive immigration reform bill with a bipartisan vote. It isn't perfect, but the key elements that many of us have been fighting for are intact. That really is a triumph of the common good.
Free market economics is touted by conservatives, and yet almost routinely now we are seeing legislation being introduced designed solely to block the competition that Tesla is bringing to the old guard.
Our federal immigration system is broken, and until we fix it, our economy will continue to suffer and other countries will continue to gain jobs at our expense.
When you are asked to work at something because that is simply what one does, many of you ask "Why should I? So-and-so made this thing and it went mad viral." A few people are genuine overnight sensations -- results of our spectacle-hungry, media-addicted culture.
America is the most immigrant-friendly nation in the world and we are also the richest; that is not a coincidence. Immigrants have been coming to our shores since the Pilgrims landed and they bring with them determination, innovation, and the entrepreneurial spirit that built this great nation.
Every time journalists cite contrarian scientists or industry-funded think tank spokespeople, they validate them as a trustworthy source. And every time journalists fail to disclose where contrarians get their funding, they fail to explain whose interests they serve.
Today's vandals, who might, God forbid, become tomorrow's terrorists, have no program whatsoever. They resemble the public hoodlums Nietzsche spoke of as the rising force in the great modern democratic cities, filling the lull with the simple rage to break the bonds among men.
No conversation, no matter how meaningful and powerful, can bring back the millions we've already lost to suicide. The loved ones of these victims also have a thirst for conversation and our efforts to engage with them may very well prevent the next loss to suicide if we can all continue to break the silence and share our journeys.
I know deep down that she's the little person she's meant to be and that she's on her own journey and that she is in fact human -- not a snorty piglet. But I can't get one irksome question out of my mind.
Permitting Tea Party, left-wing, libertarian, middle-of-the-road -- whatever -- groups to define themselves as untaxed social welfare organizations that may accept unlimited, untaxed, secret corporate gifts and sponsor political ads is a sarcoma on democracy.
The president is either moping or muttering defensively about the abuses by the IRS and the tragedy of Benghazi. As I see it, if he wakes up tomorrow and is willing to speak up, there are a few things he could fairly state. First, any suggestion that "the IRS" went after the Tea Party are bogus.
While a very slight glimmer of hope existed after the fraudulent elections in 2009 that the negative trajectory could be reversed through the ballot box, even that small probability may now have been eliminated.