Richard Thompson Ford
Rethinking Privilege
On the Merits

Meritocracy, which underpins many of our most basic assumptions about our society, is looking increasingly threadbare as an organizing principle.

Civil Discourse
How Trump Insults Real Americans

If liberals should worry about occasionally and inadvertently offending working-class whites, conservatives should worry much more about the deliberate and ongoing insult that Trump’s presidency represents.

William B. Plowman/Getty Images
Higher Ed Watch
Does Harvard’s Undergrad Admission Policy Discriminate?

The court may find that it does, but that doesn’t mean Harvard or any other university should switch to purely objective, merit-based criteria for admissions.

(Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Trump's SCOTUS Pick
Contempt of Court

Conservatives’ hardball tactics in moving the Supreme Court rightward could undercut its most important asset.

The SCOTUS Cakeshop Judgment
Anti-Discrimination Eats Itself

The Court’s latest case shows how overly broad conceptions of civil rights protections have turned important laws against themselves, like an overactive immune system that consumes its host.

Social Justice as Distributive Justice

It’s messy and open ended, like politics, where even well justified policies often involve some moral arbitrariness.

Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images
Something New Under the Sun
Political Identity Politics

What is new is not identity politics, but politics as identity—and it’s driving a culture of grievance.

Film & Politics
Black Panther: An Afrocentric Ethical Fable

Marvel’s latest blockbuster serves the classic function of myth—to provide a poetic account of the political ethics of a community.

Norms and the Law
Common Sense and Sensibility

Or, why attire matters.

Scott Eisen/Getty Images
State of the Union
Donald Trump: America’s First Post-White President

Trumpism is not a simple retread of the white supremacy of the past, but a new form of the self-destructive politics of ressentiment.

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