FROM Michael Hammond
Is Gun Control an Answer to Homegrown Terror? Investigators report that the female killer in San Bernardino pledged allegiance to ISIS on Facebook on the day the mass shooting occurred. It's not clear if the couple was directed by ISIS or only inspired, but it's more evidence that homegrown terrorism in the United States is a reality. The FBI and other agencies are monitoring hundreds of people in the hope of preventing similar crimes. Will all this increase the pressure for gun control, or will more Americans arm themselves in preparation for their worst nightmares?
Could Risk Assessment Have Prevented Virginia Tech Tragedy? The gunman who killed 32 students yesterday at Virginia Tech has been identified as Cho Seung-Hui, a resident-alien student originally from South Korea. The Chicago Tribune is reporting that the 23-year old showed signs of aberrant behavior before yesterday's violent shooting rampage. President Bush has ordered American flags flown at half-staff , and he's in Blacksburg, Virginia with the First Lady for a campus convocation. Republican Senator John McCain says the incident at Virginia Tech does not change his view that Americans have a constitutional right to carry firearms, except "to make sure that these kinds of weapons don't fall into the hands of bad people." We hear about a note reportedly left by the killer. Were there indications that he might turn violent? What about gun control?
What is Trump's plan for Middle East peace? On his first foreign tour, President Trump has promised "peace" between Israel and the Palestinians. Are there any details for re-starting talks that have been stalled for the past three years?
Should we 'hack the climate' to fight global warming? The Paris Agreements won't be enough to reverse global warming, whether President Trump pulls the US out or not. Is it time to try altering the atmosphere by what's called "geoengineering?" We hear about unintended consequences, international relations… and ethics.
Trump, the GOP and the rule of law Conservatives — and some Republicans — are criticizing the President for "the mess he made" in firing FBI Director James Comey. We hear about a potential successor, the possibility of "obstruction of justice" and the constitutional separation of powers.
Trump fires FBI Director James Comey Vice President Mike Pence took the Administration's lead today in explaining why the President fired the Head of the FBI, saying, "The president made the right decision at the right time." Trump's action is being compared to the so-called "Saturday Night Massacre" that led to President Richard Nixon's resignation in 1973.