An Immigrant, an Artist and an American Mythmaker

Two hundred years ago 17-year-old Thomas Cole emigrated from England to the United States, where he would revolutionize painting in his new country by creating “wild landscapes that were unmistakably American.” Born at the onset of the industrial revolution, Cole discovered in the American wilderness an antidote to the polluted rivers, poisoned air, and exploited […]

Politics is fleeting, art endures

“The earth laughs in flowers,” Ralph Waldo Emerson. Kalman Aron died late last month at the age of 93. When he was 16, the Germans invaded his Latvian homeland and within two years had murdered most of the country’s Jews, including his parents. Aron spent the next four years in seven concentration camps, and in […]

Scott Pruitt, Man of the People

Scott Pruitt, the cabinet officer charged with dismantling the Environmental Protection Agency, generally travels first class to avoid people who say mean things to him at airports. This is costing American taxpayers a lot of money. It’s also insulating one more politician from the people he is supposed to represent. For example, The Washington Post […]

The Making of a Scapegoat

I am the father of four children and the grandfather, so far, of four grandchildren. They are the world to me, and each time I see the image of a parent’s anguished face outside a school – or anywhere else – wondering whether her child is still inside, whether he is alive or dead, my […]