Response to “An American Amendment”

In her recent article, Ms. Zuckerman contends that “the Second Amendment and the right of an individual to own guns are two distinct ideas” and thus that the Constitution does not guarantee an individual right to firearm ownership. This, however, simply is not borne out by the weight of contemporaneous statements, assumptions, and acts at the time it was adopted.

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Thoughts on the Trump Divide

A year into his presidency, American conservatives remain divided about Donald Trump. Their disagreement may shrink over time, as it has begun to. But it won't, and shouldn't, disappear. Uncompromising hostility toward him on the right is justified only if conservatives, contrary to common sense, think they have no stake in his success as president. Yet the fear for the right's future among Never Trumpers, which partly underlies their anger toward him, cannot be cured by Trump enthusiasts' fantasizing about a populist revolution for which there is little evidence. The undeniably negative perceptions of the right among the nation's elites, naturally exacerbated by Trump's nomination and election in 2016, are too important to be dismissed by claiming that only “the people” ultimately count in a democracy. For one thing, this claim is simply false. For another, the people elected Barack Obama twice, and more of them voted for Hillary Clinton than for Trump. Such facts don't prove the existence of a left-of-center majority. But they're enough to disprove a conservative or coherently populist one. And Trump's persistently low poll numbers are another massive inconvenience for those who think he is the answer to the Right's accumulated shortcomings and weaknesses.

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Trump and Qatar

Donald Trump’s supposed support of free speech and his opposition to excessive political correctness helped garner him him legions of followers. Cherry picking examples, Trump made it appear as if there was a credible threat to free speech, and thus set himself up as a defender of the First Amendment. His war against left-leaning media outlets, combined with his stream-of-consciousness tweeting style, also make clear that his loose definition of free speech is largely one of self-convenience. His hypocrisy, however, is especially evident right now in regard to a very different issue: his handling of the Saudi-Qatar crisis.

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