June 17, 2015
AS CLERGY, our lives revolve around the religious calendars. For our Jewish brothers and sisters, September's Yom Kippur is a time of quiet reflection and atonement, followed by the celebration of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. Christians follow the familiar rhythms of the liturgical calendar, celebrating Christmas every December and Easter every spring. And nearly every spring for the last three years, clergy from across Pennsylvania sent urgent pleas to Harrisburg to stop predatory payday lenders who are seeking permission to charge usurious, triple-digit interest rates in the Keystone State.
October 16, 2014 |
NEW HAMPSHIRE state Rep. Steve Vaillancourt promised himself for years - years , he says - not to share publicly his observation that U.S. Rep. Annie Kuster reminds him of a drag queen, except she's not as good-looking. He giddily broke that promise last Friday on NH Insider, a state blog about New Hampshire politics. The reason, he noted, was that he'd just gotten wind of a poll that says an "attractive" candidate can have a seven- to 10-point advantage over a "less attractive" candidate.
March 12, 2014 |
THERE'S A GREAT story in Kostya Kennedy's new book, "Pete Rose: An American Dilemma" about the time the all-time hit king finally felt real sorrow, real remorse, for gambling on baseball. At a banquet held on the 25th anniversary of his recordsetting 4,192nd hit, Rose looked upon a room that held former teammates, opposing players, executives, fans and friends, and began to break down. "I disrespected baseball," he said at one point, choking up. "I guarantee everyone in this room I will never disrespect you again.
December 19, 2013 |
I DON'T THINK Michael Griffin was unfairly fired last week from Holy Ghost Prep. But I do think he was selectively fired. Griffin, of course, is the gay teacher who casually mentioned, in an email to the principal, that he was applying for a marriage license in New Jersey. In a subsequent conversation with school president the Rev. James McCloskey (who hired Griffin 12 years ago), Griffin confirmed his intention to wed his longtime partner, with whom he had obtained a civil union in 2008.
November 8, 2013 |
IF YOU THINK the movie-ratings system in the U.S. is arbitrary, maybe you should go to Sweden. In the equality-minded Scandinavian country, they're introducing a new rating to highlight gender bias, or rather the absence of it. To get an "A" rating, a movie must pass the so-called Bechdel test, which means it must have at least two named female characters who talk with each other about something other than a man. Like, say, "Thelma and Louise....
August 9, 2013
Why is everyone ready to stone Riley Cooper to death? Alcohol played a role in him using language he should not have used, and he should have known better, but how many times does he have to apologize and get counseling? Did Michael Vick have to go to counseling for electrocuting and torturing dogs to death? I don't think he did, and he's still making millions. The day the Eagles signed him was the day I stopped supporting them, so they should leave Riley Cooper alone and get rid of the one they should get rid of. Sandy Ward Philadelphia Riley Cooper clearly used a terrible and disgusting word of disrespect.
July 18, 2013
THANK YOU, Daily News readers, for all of your thoughtful emails, questions and column suggestions! Many of you are making healthier choices, and that's great news. The bad news is, some of you are seeing poor or unsustainable results, and throwing your hands up in frustration - or giving up altogether. If you're one of those people who are trying really hard but still experiencing the agony of defeat, check this list of common fitness slipups. Chances are that one of them is what's standing between you and success.
November 15, 2012 |
IN JANUARY 2011, Gov. Ed Rendell called those who didn't understand the rationale behind the introduction of gaming in Pennsylvania "idiots. " In floating the idea for a city-owned casino, I now feel his pain. Your editorial rejecting my bid for a city-owned casino places an ideology of the proper role of government over and above the harsh realities of our city's school kids and municipal retirees. As an editorial board, you have that luxury. As a congressman, I do not. While you accept that such a casino would bring in $25 million to $45 million annually in its first year of operation - money that would be directed to our school kids and municipal retirees - you reject the idea on a principle: that while it is OK in your eyes for the government to benefit from "sin," it should not be in the business of sin. But your argument conveniently forgets, or sidesteps, the largest "sin" business that the government does own - the Pennsylvania Lottery, a "sin" business with game sales totaling over $3 billion a year, wholly owned and operated by the commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
July 16, 2012 |
The massive investigation into Penn State's appalling failure to stop pedophile Jerry Sandusky is a study in how not to educate, lead, or protect, roles that are the very mission of a great university. "Our most saddening and sobering finding is the total disregard for the safety and welfare of Sandusky's child victims by the most senior leaders at Penn State," says chief investigator and former FBI Director Louis Freeh. "In order to avoid the consequences of bad publicity," Freeh noted - because, gee, that would be horrible - "the most powerful men at Penn State failed to take any steps for 14 years to protect children whom Sandusky victimized.
June 17, 2012 |
Dial M for Murdoch News Corporation and the Corruption of Britain By Tom Watson and Martin Hickman Blue Rider Press/Penguin Group. 360 pp. $26.95 Reviewed by Steve Weinberg For the last six years, day after day, news consumers have been bombarded with coverage of media magnate Rupert Murdoch and his media properties (especially News of the World), besieged by charges of unethical and illegal behavior. Because the scandal has played out largely in London and the rest of England, many of the players are relatively unfamiliar to news consumers in the Philadelphia metropolitan area and the remainder of the United States.