The British actor says what the obituaries are leaving out about Margaret Thatcher—her administration was nasty, especially when it came to homosexuality; gruesome images, like those taken during the Boston Marathon attacks, can teach us true sympathy and should not be censored or ignored; and maybe our Founding Fathers are to blame for the seeming impossibility of gun control. These discoveries and more below.
On a regular basis, Truthdig brings you the news items and odds and ends that have found their way to Larry Gross, director of the USC Annenberg School for Communication. A specialist in media and culture, art and communication, visual communication and media portrayals of minorities, Gross helped found the field of gay and lesbian studies.
The official obituaries have been, as often happens, partial in both senses: sympathetic and incomplete, writes Sir Ian McKellen.
Can Capitalism Tolerate a Democratic Internet?
The thing you forget about the man with 23 books to his name, books that have been translated into 30 languages, the man who cofounded the Free Press - one of the most important media reform organizations in the country - is that he has kind of crazy hair.
Did Our Founders’ Lack of Foresight Doom Gun Control?
When the Senate took up the bill to expand background checks for gun purchases this week, we heard plenty rationalizations for opposing it similar to the one offered recently by Heidi Heitkamp, the newly elected Democrat from North Dakota: “In our part of the country, [gun control] isn’t an issue. This is a way of life. This is how people feel, and it is extraordinarily difficult to explain that, especially to grieving parents.” Heitkamp’s bottom line: “I’m going to represent my state.”