Kent State + 50

Today is the 50th anniversary of the Kent State shootings.

This is another one of those events that occurred within my lifetime, but a few years too early for me to remember it. I had not yet turned two on May 4, 1970.

Growing up in Ohio in the 1970s, though, this was a topic that I heard a lot about.

Much has been said and written about Kent State over the past half-century. So I’ll be brief.

*** Continue reading “Kent State + 50”

Trump on his squabbles with the press

I’ve long suspected that Trump knows exactly what he’s doing when he engages in those long back-and-forths with hostile reporters:

Trump on media ‘hostility’: ‘If I was kind to them, I’d be walked off the stage’

The President elaborated:

President Trump defended his growing list of contentious exchanges with reporters Sunday night during Fox News’ virtual Town Hall, telling moderators Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum, “If I was kind to them, I’d be walked off the stage.”

The president argued, “I am greeted with a hostile press the likes of which no president has ever seen.”

I get it. But his daily exchanges with reporters over the coronavirus pandemic have become tortuous to watch and listen to. Continue reading “Trump on his squabbles with the press”

Coronavirus and real-world complexity

The Los Angeles Times sounds a familiar refrain on the now fully politicized matter of the coronavirus shutdown:

Even as states begin to reopen, experts say coronavirus outbreak is far from quelled

The Times later changed the headline to:

Trump acknowledges coronavirus death toll could reach 100,000

(In regard to the above number, that death toll—if it turns out to be true—would actually be less catastrophic than our flu death tolls in 1968~9 and 1957~8, especially when adjusted for population.) 

The Times goes on:

“Reopenings are beginning in many parts of the country even though, as of Sunday, no state had met federal guidelines calling on states to wait for a 14-day period of continually declining cases.”

The media (which, as I keep reminding you all, is not populated by our best and brightest) is presenting this as a binary, mostly political choice: a.) listen to the wise counsel of all-knowing doctors, and keep the economy shut down forever, or b.) listen to the gun-toting Trumpsters, and throw caution to the wind.

The real world, alas, is a little more complicated than that: Continue reading “Coronavirus and real-world complexity”