Trayvon Martin’s Death Turned Into Media-Driven Circus

In the aftermath of the tragic killing of Trayvon Martin, Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson are attempting to use the dead 17-year-old to do what they have spent so much of their adult lives doing: dividing America over racial lines. So are some Members of Congress. President Obama’s words have certainly been more subtle and less polarizing than some others. Still Obama, having waded once before into a local law enforcement issue he chose to interpret through a racial lens (the 2009 arrest of Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates by a Cambridge police officer), decided he’d speak out on the Martin tragedy – even before the facts are all in and even before an arrest has been made. That is courting trouble. Newt Gingrich fired back with typical restraint, calling the president’s comments “disgraceful.”

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Trayvon Martin’s Death Turned Into Media-Driven Circus

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The Triumph of Identity Politics

Identity politics is toxic, but it works

How the two parties approached their respective presidential election cycle losses in this decade is revealing. While the GOP conducted its 2012 “autopsy” in the open and as a result of internal and external pressures, the Democratic Party is conducting a postmortem out of the spotlight. A weekend retreat for Democratic House members and a Monday Priorities USA gathering of progressive groups suggest the party is aware it needs to adapt. Yet even the notion that the party which won the popular vote needs to reform meets with incredulity and bitter resistance from the grassroots faithful. Surely, the admonitions of a Trump-era Democrat like Jim Webb, who on Sunday chided his lifelong party for pushing all its chips in on identity politics, will be similarly discarded by the liberal activist class. Webb’s detractors would have a point. Democrats did not lose in 2016 because they embraced identity politics; they lost because they embraced the wrong sort of identity politics.

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Out Like Flynn?

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Turkey: An Uncertain Ally?

Is the Turkish president an ally or an adversary?

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will increasingly be in the news over the next two months as Turkey approaches its April 16 referendum on a new constitution which, if passed, will confirm and formalize the dictatorial powers Erdogan already assumes. At issue for the United States and the West is Turkey’s future generation. Whether relations with Turkey will enter a “new day” as Vice President Mike Pence has promised, or whether Erdogan will drive Turkey further away from the West and NATO.

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A Test of Trump’s Crisis Management

How will Trump perform when the stakes are higher?

The news today is full of reports about the unsettled atmosphere at the National Security Council, with the New York Times reporting that “council staff members get up in the morning, read President Trump’s Twitter posts and struggle to make policy to fit them. Most are kept in the dark about what Mr. Trump tells foreign leaders in his phone calls.”

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