Tim Rutten

I'm a Los Angeles-based columnist.

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Los Angeles Daily News

Islamic State’s calculated war on history: Tim Rutten

The so-called Islamic State’s casual embrace of mass murder, barbaric executions, ethno-religious cleansing and systematic degradation of women has understandably drawn attention from the other cruel tentacles of its hydra-like malice.

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Los Angeles Daily News

Harsh politics turning some away from religion: Tim Rutten

For a nation that formally separates church and state, America’s politics and its religion are uniquely enmeshed.No other country in the developed world has as many people who profess a belief in God or who regularly attend religious ser...

Los Angeles Daily News

The dangerous illusion of Americans and their guns: Tim Rutten

Few things are as dangerous as democracy in thrall to illusion.

Consider, for example, the tragic case of Americans and their guns. Count me among those who still believe that there are far too many guns in this country, that they are too easily available and too often fall into the hands of people unsuitable to own them. Those who share that position, however, long ago had to admit that we’ve lost the debate over gun control for the foreseeable future, at least.

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Los Angeles Daily News

West must realize accommodation with Islamists impossible for free societies: Tim Rutten

The initial response to Wednesday’s murderous assault on the staff of the satirical French magazine Charlie Hebdo was as remarkable as the attack itself was repellently appalling.In France and across Europe — Madrid, London, Bruss...

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Los Angeles Daily News

Political, economic inequality marks an increasingly harsh era: Tim ...

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision this week to hear arguments on the constitutionality of the one-man-one-vote principle that has been the bedrock of American electoral law for more than half a century raises the possibility that political inequality soon will join economic inequality as one of this harsh era’s bitter facts of life.

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Los Angeles Daily News

U.S. must confront refusals to acknowledge the Amernian genocide: Tim Rutten

Memory is the rootstock of genuine moral order. The accurate recollection of the past’s great evils fulfills our collective obligation to those who were grievously wronged and, properly understood, instructs those who come after them in right c...

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Los Angeles Daily News

Churches need protection from government intervention; but vendors must not discriminate: Tim Rutten

In 1864, Abraham Lincoln traveled to Baltimore to deliver a speech in which he addressed the root cause of the bloody fratricidal conflict that already had ravaged the nation for an unimaginable three years:“We all declare for liberty; b...

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Los Angeles Daily News

Fringe fantasies hit the mainstream: Tim Rutten

In a celebrated 1993 essay, the late Daniel Patrick Moynihan — who possessed one of the keenest minds ever to grace the Senate — coined a perfect phrase to describe what he saw as America’s growing indifference to acts formerly gr...

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Los Angeles Daily News

Latino immigrants bring youth, energy to U.S. culture, economy: Tim Rutten

It can be informative, sometimes sobering, to catch a glimpse of ourselves as others see us.That’s certainly the case with the current Economist’s persuasively clear-eyed and overwhelmingly positive 16-page appraisal of America...

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Los Angeles Daily News

Hiking minimum pay is good, but it’s still not a ‘living wage’: Tim Rutten

The landmark minimum wage increase nearly unanimously passed by Los Angeles City Council this week is both more and less than the rhetoric surrounding it would suggest.First — and most important — anything that improves the lot of...

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Los Angeles Daily News

Easter, Passover traditions arm us against darkness of hatred: Tim Rutten

Whether gathered for the Passover Seder table or around the table for Easter lunch, thoughtful people may have felt a momentary chill pierce the customary familial warmth as an ancient evil cast its cold shadow over this spring’s great Jewish and Christian festivals.

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Los Angeles Daily News

Religion again will play an outsized role in the 2016 elections: Tim Rutten

Prudent people never discuss politics or religion in a bar or as a guest at somebody else’s dinner table.This week’s events on the national and California political scenes provide object lessons in why that’s so.When...

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Los Angeles Daily News

Republicans on wrong side of immigration policy, politics: Tim Rutten

A federal judge sitting in south Texas and ruling at the 11th hour has thrown a judicial wrench into President Barack Obama’s attempt to normalize the lives of an estimated 5 million undocumented immigrants through executive orders.The p...

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Los Angeles Daily News

Avarice overtakes inertia in NFL’s lengthy flirtation with L.A.: Tim Rutten

Inertia and avarice almost always are underestimated forces in both our private and communal affairs.Even so, the greater Los Angeles region ought to credit both qualities for what appears to be the area’s emerging victory in its 20-year...

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Los Angeles Daily News

How to respond to drought’s political, economic realities: Tim Rutten

The event now referred to simply as “the drought” is far more than a climatological challenge to California. It also poses profound political, economic and technological questions to a society more vulnerable than many ever imagined, yet...