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RAMESH PONNURU: Liberals decide religious liberty isn’t so great

The American tradition of religious freedom has long included exemptions from laws that impose a burden on the exercise of faith. The Volstead Act implementing Prohibition, for example, made an exception for the sacramental use of alcohol. In recent years, though, liberals have started to turn away from that tradition — and come up with ever more inventive ways to justify doing so.

The cost of convicting the innocent

I edit the National Registry of Exonerations, which compiles stories and data about people who were convicted of crimes in the United States and later exonerated. The cases are fascinating and important, but they wear on me: So many of them are stories of destruction and defeat.

A refusenik’s answer to Iran

These days, like many Israelis and American Jews, I find myself in a precarious and painful situation. Those of us who believe that the nuclear agreement just signed between world powers and Iran is dangerously misguided are now compelled to criticize Israel’s best friend and ally, the government of the United States. In standing up for what we think is right, for both our people and the world, we find ourselves at odds with the power best able to protect us and promote stability. And instead of joining the hopeful chorus of those who believe peace is on the horizon, we must risk giving the impression that we somehow prefer war.

GREG RICHMOND: ‘Test and improve’ helps students

The national conversation around how and why to test kids in public schools has gone astray. Loud and persistent voices have been decrying a culture of “test and punish,” which they say hurts teachers, stresses kids and compromises creativity in the classroom. I’d join them in their chorus if what they were saying was true. But it isn’t.

LETTER: Veterans of all wars deserve to be honored

The recent defacing of the Confederate Heroes Memorial on the Grayson County square is a slap in the face to all veterans who have ever served their country and especially those who served during the Civil War. The people who did this should be considered “racists” themselves since they are discriminating against brave men and women who fought a war not about slavery but about big business — “king cotton.”

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LARRY PHILLIPS: Fireworks and child-care providers

The 84th Legislative Session came to an end on June 1. There were 6,276 bills and 200 constitutional amendments filed this session. Of these, 1,282 bills have passed into law. Over the next few weeks, I will write about some of the legislation that was passed this session.