Khashoggi, Trump, and Threats to the Press

Few would call President Donald Trump a “friend of the press.” From the advent of the phrase “fake news” to yelling at reporters in press conferences, the president has fostered one of the tensest relationships with the media that America has ever seen. However, this painful association was taken to a new level in the past month with the disappearance and death of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Khashoggi was a native Saudi, who left his country in 2017 to continue writing in DC and to avoid the suppression of…

Pink, White, and Blue: The Most Recent Transgender Fight

The LGBT community has made great strides in the past few years with the nationwide legalization of same-sex marriage, as well as the growing visibility and awareness of LGBT issues.  However, the community does still face discrimination and ignorance, and the latest example of this is the reckless fervor with which the Trump administration is attempting to roll back rights.  The Department of Health and Human Services is currently trying to establish an “explicit and uniform” definition of gender.  According to a memo obtained by the New York Times that…

The Complications of Simple Majorities

“I don’t believe that I can support a cloture resolution providing for cloture by a simple majority vote. The difficulty with any cloture is that it changes the entire character of the debate, and that it is liable to great abuse on the part of a bare majority.” – Robert A. Taft Let’s have a recap of the past two years in the U.S. Senate. Republicans took control of the Senate back in the 2016 election, holding 52 seats. With the help of the Senate Finance Committee, a new tax…

Are We Facing a Democratic Party in the Process of Radicalization?

Evident within the past decade or so, perhaps coinciding with the advent of social media platforms and greater media attention to our national political divide, the more radical elements of the right and left have gained major time in the American political spotlight. I am referring especially to the groups known as the “alt-right,” “Antifa,” the “alt-left,” and the like. While these groups are ostensibly ideologically opposed, they nonetheless share common methodological values: a diminished regard for civil discourse, a preference for informal political avenues of action, and on some…

A Conversation about Politics with Tim Penny

Fordham Libertarians President Jacob Linker had the opportunity to have an over the phone conversation with former Minnesota Congressman Tim Penny. It may not seem particularly far-fetched for a former Democratic congressman to become a libertarian Cato Institute Fellow after leaving elected office. The ideological overlap between Democrats and libertarians extends to issues such as civil liberties, immigration, and drug policy. But fiscal policy? Such a Democrat would have to be fairly unique. Former Minnesota Congressman Tim Penny is that unique figure. His record is by far one of the…

In Support of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò

This past August, former papal nuncio Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò released a revelatory letter that detailed how Pope Francis was well aware of ex-Cardinal McCarrick’s heinous clerical abuse. This scathing letter divulged that Pope Francis not only lifted sanctions placed on the sexual predator by Pope Benedict XVI, but also covered for him, even making McCarrick his “trusted counsellor.” While many have discredited the 11-page epistle merely as a far-right tactic to oppose the Jesuit Pope, this bombshell report is undoubtedly concerning, especially since the Vatican has remained silent and…

The Personal is Political: The Power of Local Activism

Our current state of hyper-connectivity through social media allows us to stay connected to socio-political movements on the national level—#MeToo, Black Lives Matter, etc.—and to remain informed, within seconds, of the latest domestic and international news. Interestingly, our use of social media encourages us to take the personal and make it political—by hashtagging, tweeting our own story, sharing a thought-provoking picture, and so on. At the same time, however, it fools us into thinking that we should prioritize change at a national level, rather than at a local level. In…

Overworked and Underpaid: America’s Public Defender Crisis

“Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country,” John Fitzgerald Kennedy famously uttered in his inaugural address. This is a valid statement. Beyond citizens’ responsibility to provide for themselves and their families, there is a need for people to work for the common good. Someone must serve on the front lines of combat, while others must attend to those who are starving. However, Kennedy’s call can be difficult to heed. Consider, for example, the legal field. Imagine being a third-year law…