Gwen's Take

Who We Are and How We Vote -- Connecting the Dots

Posted: August 2, 2012 at 5:42 pm

Paul Taylor, the executive vice president of the Pew Research Center, has long experience explaining why things happen. When we chatted on the PBS NewsHour this week, the subject was the widening chasm of economic segregation.

Bill Raspberry, 1935-2012

Posted: July 26, 2012 at 6:50 pm

I wasn’t exactly wet behind the ears when I arrived at The Washington Post in 1984, but it was close.

There was a wall of glass offices on the north side of the newsroom. When I was not laboring away in a suburban news bureau miles away, I could look across a sea of desks and cubicles and spy the likes of Bob Woodward, Ben Bradlee, David Broder-- and Bill Raspberry.

William Raspberry (Family photo / Washington Post)

Romney’s Veepstakes: Searching for Mr. (or Ms.) Right

Posted: July 19, 2012 at 7:21 pm

I am about to break a promise I made to you. I said this would be a safe space, one that would not turn itself over to rank speculation about the vice presidential sweepstakes.

But the candidates for president have invested so much time and energy trying to change the subject from whatever they don’t want to talk about this week that it has become nearly impossible to land anywhere else.

Cheers and Jeers At the NAACP Convention (And Why Candidates Like Them Both)

Posted: July 12, 2012 at 6:12 pm

You have probably already heard that they booed Mitt Romney and cheered Joe Biden at the NAACP convention in Houston, Texas this week. Here is why it goes much deeper than that.

I’ve covered my share of NAACP conventions over the years. The attendees are aggressively middle-class, overwhelmingly well-churched, and incredibly well-informed. They are also mostly Democrats.

But educated, churchgoing middle-class people are also usually pretty polite. They boo when they feel they have been goaded.

Our Messy Liberties, Then And Now

Posted: July 5, 2012 at 5:58 pm

On the Fourth of July, I poured a cup of coffee and started my day reading the Declaration of Independence at my kitchen table. Out loud.

You should try it. It’s one thing to think you know what it says. It’s another thing to hear the words come back at you in your own voice.

We all remember the opening phrases -- “When in the course of human events...” and “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal….” But how many of us recall how in-your-face the rest of the document is?

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