Columnists

The Challenge of Being Paul Ryan

Paul Ryan has always wanted to be several things at once, which makes for a hard balancing act. He knows his faith teaches compassion, but he's also an ideologue.

Joe Biden's Dignity

His withdrawal speech sounded like an announcement speech, and it captured the aching ambivalence of Joe Biden. So why didn’t he run the race he wanted to join?

The GOP Establishment's Weak Tea

Trump speaks clearly to a group that sociologist Donald Warren identified in 1976 as “Middle American Radicals,” who think the middle class is seriously neglected.

Safe and Sorry

Standing in that endless, pointless line, I realized, wasn’t communicating our affection for the pope but our acceptance of the authority of the security state.

Francis Goes to Congress

For those listening carefully in the House chamber, Pope Francis will have presented some quandaries that they are more ready to ignore than to engage.

The Conservative Evasion on Guns

We won't act unless political parties that block action lose their majorities. Yes, I mean a Republican Party that's aligned itself with the interests of gun makers.

Letter from Rome

After news of secret visit with Kim Davis, could the affection that Pope Francis generated with his visit to the United States last week vanish in a cloud of smoke?

Boehner Climbs Off the Tiger

Given the deep hostility to Obama in the Republican Party, and given the tea party revolt, it’s doubtful that any Republican would have found it easy to deliver.

Letter from Rome

The American media have discovered that a Catholic church exists beyond the sex abuse and financial scandals. But as others have said: The church is not the pope.

When Actions Are Louder than Words

As important as hearing Francis’s words will be paying close attention to whom he chooses to visit while he’s here. In his value system, the last really are first.

When Justice Meets Vanity

If you doubt the relevance of Scripture to our times, consider the contrast this week between what Donald Trump was up to and what Bernie Sanders did.

Unction Dysfunction

According to Catholic discipline, there is only one kind of person who can offer anointing of the sick: a priest. But there aren’t enough priests to go around.
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