FROM THIS EPISODE
America's latest and worst mass shooting may lead to a measure of national gun control. Today, journalist Hugh Hewitt spoke with Paul Ryan about the so-called "bump stocks" — used by the shooter in Las Vegas to increase the firepower of legal weapons. The Speaker replied, "I didn't know what they were until this week and I'm an avid sportsman. So I think we're quickly coming up to speed with what this is. Fully automatic weapons have been banned for a long time. Apparently this allows you to take a semi-automatic, turn it into a fully automatic -- so clearly this is something we need to look into." Sheryl Gay Stolberg, Washington correspondent for the New York Times, says that although Congress may introduce legislation but it's unlikely that the NRA will go along.
First, the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union. Now, leaders of Catalonia, the richest province in Spain, want to declare independence. On Sunday, they went ahead with a referendum that had been ruled illegal. Tuesday, separatists took to the streets of Barcelona, Catalonia's capital city. That night, King Felipe VI took a tough stand in a rare TV appearance, instead of appealing for national unity. But today, separatist leaders said they'll obey yet another court order -- their regional parliament won't declare independence on Monday. The national government's brutal attacks on voters may have increased momentum. But Spain's not the only country where growing local resentment of distant central governments is stoking forms of separatism. Leaders of the European Union have been silent so far, but they may be facing threats to unity — as well as democracy.
Stephen Burgen, freelance journalist (@stephenburgen)
Liz Castro, Catalan National Assembly (@lizcastro)
Ana, Catalan, Spaniard and citizen of the EU
Simon Tisdall, Guardian (@guardian)
Steven Blockmans, Centre for European Policy Studies (@StevenBlockmans)
Burgen on Catalan president accusing Spanish king of being government mouthpiece
Tisdall on Europe groups seeking to redefine identity, rejecting centralized state
Tisdall on EU being nowhere to be seen as Catalonia crisis escalates
Stephen Paddock was the man who killed at least 58 country-music concert-goers in Las Vegas on Sunday. What more do we know? Sheriff Joe Lombardo says he was leading a "secret life." Paddock’s surviving brother Eric, struggles to understand. He called his brother a gambler, but said that, "Steve took care of the people he loved. He helped make me and my family wealthy. He's the reason I was able to retire three years ago when I got really burned out doing the job that I did. I mean this is the Steve we know, we knew." Matt Pearce, national reporter for the Los Angeles Times, says new information that has come to light raises more questions than answers.
More From To the Point
The Jewish State of Israel: Democracy or Apartheid? Israel’s recent “national unity” law calls the country “unique” to the Jewish people. But 21 percent of Israelis are Arabs. Do Jewish values conflict with pluralistic democracy? Jews in both countries are sharply divided over a question that goes to the founding of the “Jewish State.”
Is ‘socialism’ dividing the Democrats From Bernie Sanders to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez,“socialism” is having a hot summer. Is it the future of the Democratic Party or an easy Republican target? Prominent liberals and conservatives describe the history--and possible future--of a term loaded with many meanings in America’s political history.
Cartoons, Comic Strips and Opinions Rob Rogers of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is the latest editorial cartoonist to lose his job. Fired for harsh portrayals of President Trump. We’ll talk with him and look at another kind of cartooning: comic strips. Even when the kids don’t realize it, they’re political, too. They’re a highly sophisticated artform and a barometer of social change.
Cyberwar: Can the US Defend Against “The Perfect Weapon?” By hacking centrifuges, the US may have slowed Iran’s nuclear-weapons program. But a good offense is not the best defense. Threats to US elections, the power grid and even medical records are real and present. But they’re not getting the attention they deserve. That’s according to the New York Times’ David Sanger, in his book The Perfect Weapon.
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