Kyle Paletta: The New Yorker’s paper subscription slips have long carried a tagline: ‘The best writing, anywhere.’ It follows that the source of the best writing, anywhere, must also be the finest available authority on grammar, usage, and punctuation. But regular readers know that the magazine’s signature is not standard usage, but its opposite. Nowhere else will you find an accent aigu on ‘élite’ or a diaeresis on ‘reëmerge.’ And the commas—goodness, the commas!”

Ibram X. Kendi: “An anti-racist America can only be guaranteed if principled anti-racists are in power, and anti-racist policies become the law of the land.”

Scott Attran: “In the world of liberal democracy and human rights, violence – especially extreme forms of mass bloodshed – is generally considered pathological or an evil expression of human nature. But across most history and cultures, violence against other groups is claimed by the perpetrators to be a sublime matter of moral virtue. For without a claim to virtue it is difficult, if not inconceivable, to kill large numbers of people innocent of direct harm to others.”


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