New at Zócalo


When Black Prizefighters Consider Family as Much a Symbol of Masculinity as a Knockout

By Defining Themselves as Family Men Outside the Ring, They Link Patriarchal Pride With Athletic Prowess

By Louis Moore

Standing 6 feet 7 inches, with an athlete’s body, Deontay Wilder dreamed of going pro in either football or basketball. But at 19, with a newborn girl who had spina bifida and medical bills piling up, he knew he had to step up. His jobs busing tables at Red Lobster and IHOP and his shift driving a beer truck just weren’t going to cut it.
    As a young man in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, without a college degree, he didn’t have much of a choice. So he did what countless black men have done for more than a century to support their families: He turned to prizefighting. As Wilder said of his daughter during his Olympic debut in 2008, “I want to make sure she’s financially stable. I want to make sure she doesn’t have to struggle. I want to make sure I can support her through college.” In other ...

What It Means to Be American

The Chief Justice Who Elevated the Supreme Court Into a Co-Equal Branch of Government

Before John Marshall, the Court Had Been a Constitutional Afterthought

By Joel Richard Paul

No one in the founding generation left a more lasting imprint on American government and law than Chief Justice John Marshall.
    We remember Washington’s leadership, Jefferson’s eloquence, and Franklin’s wit, but Marshall breathed life into the Constitution, elevated the judiciary, and defended the federal government’s power over feuding states. The power of judicial review and the corresponding principle that courts should not interfere with political judgments are just two of the many doctrines that Marshall wove into our Constitution.
    How was it possible that a man raised with 14 siblings in a 400-square-foot, two-room log cabin on the hardscrabble western frontier of Virginia defined the Constitution and forged some of ...

Connecting California Joe Mathews

  • The Greta Garbo of California Reservoirs Should Be Left Alone

    Lake Mathews Is Beautiful, Lofty, and Forbidden. Humans, Keep Your Distance.

    Stay away from my lake, Californians.
        It’s too beautiful, and too important, for the likes of you.
        It’s true that, as a legal matter, I don’t own Lake Mathews. But I’ve always felt a special kinship with a Riverside County reservoir that ...

  • Can Taiwan Teach California How to Thrive Under an Authoritarian Power?

    The Island Nation Knows How to Navigate Beijing's Threats. The Golden State Could Do the Same With Washington.

    Is California becoming another Taiwan?
        In asking that, I don’t mean that earthquakes will turn California into an island. Instead, what California and Taiwan share is a problem—the ...

  • Fear and Loathing of L.A. and S.F. on the Campaign Trail

    Our Gubernatorial Race Could Turn on Which City Californians Resent Most

    Which city—San Francisco or Los Angeles—do you love to hate more?
        This is shaping up to be California’s question for 2018. Each of the two top contenders for governor is a former mayor of one of those cities, with each embodying certain grievances that Californians hold about their ...

  • Video Highlights

    In his book "Age of Anger: A History of the Present," the writer Pankaj Mishra examines the 18th-century antecedents of the 21st-century disillusionment with liberal, free-market democratic systems that has triggered voter backlashes and violent outbursts. ...