National Voices

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  1. OTHER VIEWS: Time to bring back the firing squad

    Friday, Mar 27 2015 08:00 PM

    The likelihood that a state might execute an innocent person -- something that has almost certainly already happened in the U.S. -- is reason enough to abolish the death penalty. But while states continue to use it, they could at least be honest about what it means and choose a method that doesn't inflict additional unnecessary suffering.

    It's not hard to kill a prisoner swiftly. A bullet to the heart, or lopping off the head, does the job. Yet states have chosen to disguise the brutality of the death penalty by adopting lethal injection -- a method that purports to be more humane but, because it doesn't work reliably, is actually more cruel than, say, death by firing squad. The desire to sanitize execution has made a terrible policy...

  2. MICHAEL GERSON: World might not be ready for 'the next epidemic'

    "Of all the things that could kill more than 10 million people around the world," writes philanthropist Bill Gates in The New England Journal of Medicine, "the most likely is an epidemic stemming from either natural causes or bioterrorism....

  3. OTHER VIEWS: Presidential debates: Bigger, broader, better

    Most Americans want a third party, which probably explains why leaders of the Democratic and Republican parties have conspired for the past three decades to exclude third-party candidates from the presidential debates. Never mind how...

  4. Unborn child act needs to pass

    In 1973, Roe v. Wade made abortions legal in the United States. Statistics show that four in 10 pregnancies lead to abortion. Eighteen percent of pregnant women are in their 20s, and many of these deliver late in term. A letter writer...

  5. ESTHER CEPEDA: An ode to the joy of teaching that inspires

    Writing in the Wall Street Journal, David Gelernter, professor of computer science at Yale and a former board member of the National Endowment for the Arts, made the following bold statement in response to a student's wondering about why...

  6. MICHAEL GERSON: How to block a bad deal with Iran

    It is the common temptation of Republicans and Democrats to support a strong executive when it does things they like, and to condemn it when it does things they don't. There is, however, a group of committed institutionalists that has...

  7. OTHER VIEWS: Obama strikes right balance on fracking

    After more than four years of effort, on Friday the Obama administration finalized new rules on hydraulic fracturing, also known as "fracking," on federal lands. Critics on both sides of the fracking wars descended immediately, picking the...

  8. OTHER VIEWS: President's moment in Afghanistan

    Could more U.S. troops, given more time, finally defeat the Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan? It would be folly to think so, after more than 13 years of fighting. On the other hand, a full withdrawal of U.S. soldiers might lead the...

  9. OTHER VIEWS: Medicare reform: Why it's past time to adopt it

    House Republicans have no qualms about leaving millions of low-income Americans without health coverage, as evidenced by their repeated votes to repeal Obamacare. But they're so skittish about reducing access to Medicare, the federal...

  10. DANA MILBANK: Will Israel be able to remain a democracy?

    Eleven years ago, I carried my infant daughter into a synagogue basement and plunged her tiny body, head to toe, underwater. She emerged sputtering and coughing, then wailing, and the procedure, immersion in a Jewish ritual bath called...

  11. ESTHER CEPEDA: Reading beyond the chili peppers

    The Economist's recent special report on Hispanics has stoked Latino ire with a cover featuring the stars and stripes composed of denim, stars and red hot chili peppers. The magazine is an unabashedly cheeky publication -- as likely to...

  12. OTHER VIEWS: There is no need to speed our TV reruns

    Astute television viewers know that cable networks have long crunched opening or closing credits on reruns to squeeze more time for ads into an hourlong slot. No harm, no foul, we say. But now comes disturbing word of cable mandarins...

  13. OTHER VIEWS: Keep US-Israel relationship strong

    The surprising victory of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the polls this week represents a remarkable personal triumph, making him one of the Jewish state's longest-serving leaders. Now, let the fence-mending begin -- as hard...

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