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By CNN | Smart takes from CNN Opinion

Feel disrespected? Pull a gun

(CNN) — Feel disrespected? Pull a gun. Open fire. That'll teach 'em.

It's become the norm in the United States.

"We don't treat guns like they're instruments of death in this country." That comes from a man who knows. Lonnie Phillips lost his daughter, Jessica, to the monster who opened fire at a …

Guns

Democrats should thank Donald Trump

(CNN) — Dear Donald:

As a voter who's leaning toward voting Democratic, I just wanted to say thank you.

Thank you for your antics. Thank you for your arrogance. And most of all, thank you for damaging the GOP brand -- possibly beyond restoration for quite likely the entire election season.

If you'll …

Donald Trump

Iran deal: Why don't Americans like it?

(CNN) — I don't read polls for a living, and certainly don't want to compete with those who do. But I was intrigued by a new CNN poll that found a majority of Americans in favor of Congress rejecting the recently negotiated nuclear deal with Iran.

To be sure this is one poll; and others have reached …

Middle East

Abercrombie: The never-ending, exclusive frat party?

(CNN) — I have to admit I haven't shopped at Abercrombie & Fitch since I was a freshman in college. Even then, when I fell squarely within the brand's numerical demographic, I felt fully outside of it. I prefer not to dress like a frat party might spontaneously materialize in front of me at any …

Clothing

Should colleges do away with SATs?

(CNN) — This week, George Washington University announced it is adopting a "test-optional" admissions policy, becoming one of the largest private universities to allow prospective students to opt out of sending ACT or SAT scores.

GW joins other top-rated national universities such as Wake Forest and …

University of South Carolina

Are Patriots fans the only ones who believe Tom Brady?

(CNN) — Jerry Seinfeld joked on his TV show that loyalty to athletes is strictly a matter of laundry. You love a guy who wears your favorite team's uniform, but not if he puts on a different team's shirt. Or, as Seinfeld summed it up: "You're actually rooting for the clothes."

It seems like a safe …

Tom Brady

Twisted logic behind lion hunts

(CNN) — The brutal killing of Cecil the Lion has rightly drawn outrage from around the world. Reports say that this local celebrity and dominant male of his pride was lured with food out of a Zimbabwe national park, only to be struck by an arrow shot from the bow of a Minnesota dentist who paid …

Africa

The man who wouldn't hand over bin Laden to the U.S.

(CNN) — He is as mysterious in his reported death as he was mysterious in life. Mullah Omar, one of the world's most wanted men, died in a hospital in Karachi, Pakistan, more than two years ago, according to Afghan government officials. U.S. officials say they believe this to be a "credible" …

Religion

Pilot: What the wreckage tells us

(CNN) — Nothing would be more poignantly encouraging for 239 families than to know that the piece of aircraft part found on La Reunion Island east of Madagascar connects with MH370 -- the Boeing 777 that disappeared in March 2014, en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. The world wants to know. And …

Airplanes

Jon Stewart for president?

(CNN) — On Tuesday we learned that President Obama had "secretly" summoned "Daily Show" host Jon Stewart to the White House twice in recent years. Social media was abuzz with the question of whether Stewart was actually advising Obama on certain policy issues. The comments of Obama's former senior …

Jon Stewart

Sudan's other crisis

(CNN) — Once their remoteness and inaccessibility made the Nuba Mountains a refuge in Sudan, offering sanctuary and protection to people fleeing persecution. Today, a lack of access has made the same mountains a deadly prison to hundreds of thousands trapped in a bitter struggle between the …

Africa

Obama's missed Africa opportunity

(CNN) — President Barack Obama's arrival this week in Kenya will be an emotional and historic moment. His visit to the land of his father's birth will be a celebration of the growing ties between African nations and the United States. Meanwhile, Americans and Africans are today being drawn together …

Africa

Is this ARK better than Noah's?

(CNN) — Every year, about 70,000 domestic and wild animals pass through the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey-operated JFK airport, and a $48 million luxury terminal for them is now under construction, slated to open next year.

Artist renderings shows a grassy, well lit, 178,000-square-foot …

Swimming Pool

How Donald Trump could sink the Republicans

(CNN) — Donald Trump has suggested, in an interview with The Hill, that if the Republican Party doesn't treat him right, he might run as a third-party candidate. Republicans should be worried.

If Trump takes this step, he would add a serious element of uncertainty into an already unwieldy process. …

Donald Trump

Uber wins, liberals lose

(CNN) — The rise of the "gig economy" has given Democrats from Hillary Clinton on down a tough issue to wrestle with, one that wedges them uncomfortably between Silicon Valley money and millennial digital natives on one side, and organized labor and disempowered workers on the other -- in a fight …

Uber

The 5 telltale techniques of climate change denial

(CNN) — There is overwhelming scientific evidence that humans are causing global warming. Nevertheless, a small proportion of the population continues to deny the science. This can be problematic when the small number denying climate science includes half of the U.S. Senate.

How do you identify …

Climate

Trump's attack on McCain demeans veterans

(CNN) — Donald Trump's remarks disparaging Sen. John McCain's military service were particularly objectionable coming from a man who, despite his tough talk, avoided military service through the deferment process. By contrast, McCain stepped up to the plate to serve.

Trump has never served a day in …

Republicans

PTSD veteran: I'm not crazy

(CNN) — Army Spc. Scott Barber has beautiful, bright blue eyes. I mention his eyes because, he said, they turned black the day he died.

"I flatlined. I seized," he told me, his voice shaking.

Barber, like thousands of other veterans, suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. And, sadly, …

Psychiatry

Let Americans know what's in their food

(CNN) — One morning, just over a century ago, President Theodore Roosevelt threw his breakfast sausages out of a White House window.

That, at least, is how one humorist painted the picture of the President upon reading Upton Sinclair's now-classic novel "The Jungle," set amidst the severe and …

Food

The stars have aligned for real prison reform

(CNN) — If you do not yet believe that bipartisan criminal justice reform is possible inside the dysfunction of Washington, it is time to put away your doubts.

Over the last two weeks, we have witnessed a historic surge of momentum for the prospects of justice reform -- punctuated by this week's …

Civil Liberties

The sex freak-out of the 1970s

(CNN) — To borrow a cliché, the 1970s was all about sex, drugs and rock and roll. But arguably, it was the sex part that had the most enduring and profound effect on American society.

The 1970s saw the convergence of several phenomena related to sex, sexuality and gender. There was the women's …

Gay Rights

What the Boy Scouts -- and I -- lost

(CNN) — I loved my four years in the Boy Scouts: New friends, fun weekly troop meetings, monthly camping expeditions, earning merit badges all the way to Eagle Scout. Standing by myself in a still, silent pine grove at summer camp in California's Sierra Mountains.

Most of all, I really believed in …

Boy Scouts of America

Donald Trump: God's gift to comedy

(CNN) — A new poll has Donald Trump leading the Republican pack with GOP voters nationwide. This raises the question: "Who are these people who say they'll vote for Trump?"

How did he skyrocket past such statesmen as Rick "you can't spell sanatorium without the letters s-a-n-t-o-r-u-m" Santorum; and …

Donald Trump

An un-American way to tackle extremism (Opinion) - CNN.com

Story highlights

Bill introduced to authorize Office for Countering Violent Extremism
• Arjun Singh Sethi: Pilot programs introduced in some cities is un-American

Arjun Singh Sethi is a writer and lawyer and director of law and policy at the Sikh Coalition. He is also an adjunct professor of law at …

Extremism

Iran's nuclear pact: Deal of the century?

(CNN) — After 20 months of negotiations, a deal has been announced over Iran's nuclear program. But is it a good deal? And if so, for whom? CNN asked a range of contributors for their take on what it means, and what to expect next. The views expressed are the writers' own.

Aaron David Miller: The …

Iran Nuclear Negotiations

The women who got us close to Pluto

(CNN) — Kudos to NASA for pointing out that some 25% of the New Horizons team are women, which is quite a bit higher than the percentage of engineers and physicists who are women (about 15% to 20%) or planetary faculty who are women (13%).

Why are there so many women in this team? It's partly that …

Pluto

CNN's Nic Robertson on hopes of U.S.-Iran nuclear deal - CNN.com

Story highlights

CNN's Nic Robertson is covering the U.S.-Iranian negotiations in Austria
• Robertson opines on the nuclear negotiations taking place under a broiling Vienna sun

Vienna, Austria (CNN)We don't know what goes on behind the closed doors of the Coburg Hotel, the swanky Viennese venue for …

Nuclear Energy

Ebola: What my experience taught me

(CNN) — Last summer, I suffered the first symptoms of a disease I knew only too well -- the rapid onset of an intense headache, followed by a fever and elevated heart rate. I sought help right away, fearing that I had contracted Ebola in my job as an emergency medicine physician at John F. Kennedy …

Ebola

Trump: America's reality show candidate

(CNN) — Americans love a good reality show, and the 2016 presidential election has become just that, especially after the Republicans cast a perfect lead character in the cartoonish, larger-than-life Donald Trump.

It might be fun to watch if the stakes weren't so high. Our world is growing more …

Donald Trump