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Politics and the pulpit illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Indiana’s religious freedom conundrum

When Indiana’s state legislature approved a bill late last week that seeks to protect the free exercise of religion, churchmen may have been expected to bless the statute. But some won’t go there, as it appears the legislation threatens to expose an uncomfortable wound in liberal Christianity.

Illustration on Neville Chamberlain's deal with Hitler and the historical results of appeasing tyranny by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

The ghastly shadow of Munich

The Western capitulation to Adolf Hitler in the 1938 Munich Agreement is cited as classic appeasement that destroyed Czechoslovakia, backfired on France and Britain, and led to World War II.

14-month-old Zoe Buck checks out an empty voting booth as at her mother, Julie Buck, votes at left on Nov. 4 at the Alaska Zoo polling place in Anchorage, Alaska. (Associated Press)

The mandatory voting panacea

President Obama recently suggested that mandatory voting could cure some of the ills of American democracy. Mr. Obama observed that compelling everyone to vote is one way to “encourage more participation” — perhaps the same way that the specter of prison sentences encourages more people to pay taxes. While there are many good reasons to oppose mandatory voting, compulsory balloting could help Americans recognize what their political system has become.

Illustration on tragedy in the midst of Spring's renewal by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

When tragedy stalks the season of hope

Tragedy never takes a holiday, and the days just overflowed with fear and grief. A German airliner crashes into the French Alps, and then three buildings in the East Village of New York collapse after a basement explosion, days after a hot plate left unattended to warm food sets fire to a house in Brooklyn, and six of eight children die. Suddenly there’s no room in our hearts and minds to think about political tragedy that may be playing out in the Middle East.

U.S. manufacturing jobs illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Returning to ‘Made in the USA’

Now that the presidential race is in full swing, it’s time for robust talking about issues and creating awareness about problems, which only seem to come to light when the American public is focused choosing a new national leader.

Illustration on corruption behind Cover Oregon by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Adding corruption to Obamacare incompetence

Deception and unaccountability have plagued Obamacare from the start. First, millions of Americans found out that, contrary to promises, they couldn’t keep the health insurance plans they liked. Then a botched website rollout spoiled the law’s enrollment debut. Now, in the law’s first real tax season, the federal government sent 800,000 enrollees incorrect tax forms.

Plane passengers murdered illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

When evil flies as co-pilot

Ask yourself this question: When you hear that Andreas Lubitz was “depressed” and had “mental illness,” what additional information does this give anyone about the miserable miscreant who killed 149 innocent people by setting an Airbus A320 on a trajectory to crash into the French Alps? Or how to stop the next one?

Illustration on the waning of sexual political scandals by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Sex among the goofballs

What is going on in American politics of late? There has not emerged a truly goofball politician since Anthony Weiner, the congressman and later New York mayoral candidate who could not resist sending pictures of his private part so frequently and to so many women, that it really was no longer a private part but rather a public spectacle. Go ahead, Google it. In fact, Yahoo it. My guess is there are dozens of pictures of Mr. Weiner’s public private part all over the Internet.

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Veteran broadcaster Larry King will be feted at the Newseum for a career that has spanned decades. (Image courtesy of Larry King)

Larry King's secret of success: 'Just a regular guy' who asks one-sentence questions

- The Washington Times

For a man who has interviewed seven presidents and 50,000 assorted luminaries over a career spanning decades, Larry King has a simple rule for success. "What I do, I've been doing for 58 years. I'm not doing anything differently now than I did in 1957 when I started. I take my curiosity - and I make a living with it," Mr. King said in an interview with The Washington Times.

FILE - In this Jan. 28, 2015 file photo, Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington before the Senate Judiciary Committee's confirmation hearing.  The White House blasted Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Monday for holding up confirmation of Lynch, President Barack Obama's pick for attorney general, arguing the "unconscionable delay" was a stain on the Kentucky Republican's leadership. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Opportunity for Mitch McConnell

Loretta Lynch, President Obama's choice to succeed Attorney General Eric Holder, appears to be in trouble. So is the Republican legislation to do something about sex trafficking of girls and women, and the Republicans can prevail in both cases if Mitch McConnell doesn't blink before Harry Reid. This would erase the humiliation of the majority leader's performance in the debate over the budget for the Homeland Security Agency.

Illustration on the budget-cutting duties of the next president by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Wanted: A budget-cutting president

The candidate who wins the presidency in 2016 will be the one who vows to wage all-out war on a bloated, inefficient, corrupt government in need of a top-to-bottom, budget-cutting revolution.

Cost of the prison system, illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Rand Paul's appeal for sensible sentencing

A couple of months back in our nation's capital, Sen. Rand Paul spoke at The American Spectator's annual Robert L. Bartley dinner and wowed the crowd. However, at the end of his rousing speech he assumed a more somber tone as he spoke about the plight of America's poor, particularly the poor who commit petty crime.

Signatories right on Iran letter

Contrary to the objections of the White House and President Obama's spokespersons, congressional leaders had every right to make clear in a letter to the Iranian leaders what the difference is between an executive order/agreement and a treaty ratified by Congress and signed by the president.

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a meeting of the Victory Day celebrations organizing committee in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, March 17, 2015. Russia's foreign minister says the leader of North Korea is among 26 world leaders who have accepted invitations to Moscow to take part in celebrations marking the 70th anniversary of the Soviet Union's victory over Nazi Germany. (AP Photo/Sergei Ilnitsky, Pool)

When dictators go missing

When Russian President Vladimir Putin vanished from sight in early March all the explanation were colorful rumors. The maximum leader was a victim of a coup, he was attending the birth of his "love child" (the warmer, fuzzier Vlad), he was having cosmetic surgery (bullies on steeds need Botox, too). Or he was dead.

Life there, once upon a time? NASA scientists say a primitive ocean on Mars held more water than Earth's Arctic Ocean. (NASA/GSFC)

Library of Congress explores the implications of 'selfhood' and extraterrestrial life

- The Washington Times

Space, the final frontier for academia? On Wednesday and Thursday, the Library of Congress will focus on revelations in astrobiology, and there's a big title: "Astrobiology and the Religious Imagination: Reexamining Notions of Creation, Humanity, Selfhood, and the Cosmos." For the uninitiated, astrobiology is a multi-disciplinary field which deals in extraterrestrial matters, asking "How does life begin and evolve? Is there life beyond Earth and, if so, how can we detect it? What is the future of life on Earth and in the universe?"

Republican tax tree illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

The Lee-Rubio tax blueprint

Republican Sens. Mike Lee of Utah and Marco Rubio of Florida have released a blueprint for federal tax reform called "The Economic Growth and Family Fairness Tax Plan." First, we should not embrace the language of progressive socialism in believing tax reform should have as a goal to advance "family fairness." The plan should simply be entitled "The American Growth and Opportunity Plan." That said, the Lee-Rubio plan is a great improvement over the current system.

Carson right on homosexuality

How predictable to see Dr. Ben Carson bullied by the militant gay lobby for speaking the truth — that unlike skin color, being gay is ultimately a choice ("Ben Carson cites prison as proof that homosexuality is a choice," Web, March 4).

Islamophobia and the justification of violence

Only in the rarified atmosphere of academia can the American flag be seen as a symbol of hate, and killing people for their opinions can be justified as the natural outgrowth of Islamophobia.

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler speaks during new conference in Washington in this Oct. 8, 2014, file photo. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File)

Saying ‘so long’ to the First Amendment

Two weeks after the Federal Communications Commission voted to regulate the Internet as a utility, the masters of the universe at the FCC, three unelected Democrats, are finally allowing Americans to see the actual order on exactly how they intend to ruin one of the major free speech and free market successes in the world.

Hillary Rodham Clinton answers questions at a news conference at the United Nations, Tuesday, March 10, 2015.   Clinton conceded that she should have used a government email to conduct business as secretary of state, saying her decision was simply a matter of "convenience." (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Paying attention: 65 percent of Americans 'closely' following Hillary's email controversy

- The Washington Times

It's not the vast right wing conspiracy ramping up rumors and hearsay into a perfect storm of lousy press for Hillary Clinton. Americans themselves are tracking the unfolding controversy over Mrs. Clinton's use of private emails during her time as Secretary of State: 65 percent say they are "closely" following the story; 78 percent of Republicans and 68 percent of Democrats agree, says a new YouGov poll:

Illustration on love, forgiveness and racial harmony by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

The power of forgiveness

Turn on the news and you expect to see people of different races and politics denouncing each other. That's why what happened last week on "The Kelly File," Megyn Kelly's Fox News program, was so remarkable.

Abraham Lincoln: A man of his words

Most presidents are defined by what happened while they were in office and what others write about them afterward. Few paint enduring self-portraits in their own words. In the 20th century, only Franklin Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan embedded themselves in history largely through their living words and images — FDR via radio and film, Reagan using television as well

An Orthodox Jewish man walks past a billboard of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Bnei Brak near Tel Aviv, Israel, Monday, March 16, 2015, a day ahead of legislative elections. Netanyahu is seeking his fourth term as prime minister. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

A long night for Bibi

Benjamin Netanyahu faces a long election night. As election day dawns on Tuesday, his Likud Party trails by four seats in election-eve polling. He has barnstormed the country, warning voters of the consequences of turning the security of Israel over to his rivals, with apologies for his government's lack of attention to the economic plight of the average Israeli family.