1. Here is a symptom of just how violent American society has become.  The University of Maryland is spending $60,000 on bullet-proof whiteboards for their professors.  That’s a lot of money to spend on what appears to be a symbolic gesture.  Or is it more than symbolic?

2. Speaking of violence, check out this Time article on the association of violence with young black men, authored by Columbia University English Professor John McWhorter.

3. On a lighter note, here’s an interesting piece by science writer Amir Aczel on coincidences.

4. Lastly, check out this First Things piece by Randy Boyagoda on religiously-minded readers of fiction.

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