The temperature was a bracing 23 degrees F with high winds, but business was as usual in Istanbul's Grand Bazaar. Seated in an alley outside the Varol Çay Ocagi, a tea kitchen, I talked with Sefa Ulusan, one of the men who serve çay to the merchants and their customers on the north end of the maze of shops.
But this was an unusually interesting night at the Morgan, the eve of the PEN gala, and many in the room were slated to attend the writers' annual dinner that would honor Charlie Hebdo's Gerard Biard and Jean-Baptiste Thoret accepting the Freedom of Expression Courage Award on behalf of the magazine.
Lamarche and Christie agree on Marriage Equality and Charlie Hebdo but, like the country, divide on why it's the fire this time in Baltimore. Will we have recurring police-triggered violence -- from Harlem in 1930s to Ferguson and Baltimore today -- or can government reduce both police violence and urban pathologies?