American literature is rich with books that illuminate our culture from an immigrant's fresh perspective. The most powerful tend to be written by the newcomers themselves, or their offspring, but there are exceptions. Nell Freudenberger's latest novel, The Newlyweds, is about a young Bangladeshi woman determined to find a better life by marrying an American she meets on a dating website. Coming from a native New Yorker, it's an act of sustained, cross-cultural ventriloquism and empathy.
President Barack Obama attends a meeting with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai, on May 2, 2012 in Kabul, Afghanistan. The U.S. and Afghan Presidents signed a long-term strategic partnership outlining their cooperation following the 2014 withdrawal of NATO and allied forces.
President Barack Obama delivers an address to the American people on U.S. policy and the war in Afghanistan during his visit to Bagram Air Base May 2, 2012 in Afghanistan. Obama told Americans the goal of defeating the al Qaida network was within reach.
Senator Tom Hayden is the Nation Institute's Carey McWilliams Fellow.
President Obama's dramatic speech from Afghanistan should be parsed as a careful election-year orchestration of his plan to "wind down" the war. It is no accident that the speech came during the first-year commemoration of the killing of Osama bin Laden, the event providing Obama the rationale for ending American combat while placing hawks and political rivals on the defensive.
Drinks with a lot of sugar will rot your teeth, right? That's the conventional wisdom.
But what about the acid? It's not something we think much about, but dentists say it's high time we start, especially when it comes to the river of energy drinks we — and young people in particular — are consuming.