Robert C. Koehler

Robert C. Koehler

Robert Koehler is an award-winning, Chicago-based journalist and nationally syndicated writer. His new book, Courage Grows Strong at the Wound is now available. Contact him at koehlercw@gmail.com or visit his website at commonwonders.com.

Articles by this author

At one time, outright denial of a sexual abuse allegation wasn’t even necessary because, even if it were true, so what? That was then. The idea of “a man’s world” was solid and, well, boys will be boys. Views
Thursday, November 16, 2017
Trapped in a ‘Man’s World’
Things fall apart, the center cannot hold . . . The “man’s world” I grew up in is shattering into fragments of shame, contrition and desperate denial. Allegations of sexual harassment and abuse are catching up with powerful perps, sometimes decades after the fact. On Capitol Hill, we now know about...
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Thursday, November 09, 2017
A Texas Church Massacre and the Illusion of Armed Salvation
This time, the “the fire and the fury” of American mass murder erupted in church. Twenty-six people were killed, including children, one only 18 months old. How do we stroke their memory? How do we move forward? This is bigger than gun control. We should begin, I think, by envisioning a world...
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The idea that a 10-year-old girl with cerebral palsy, who has lived in the United States since she was three months old, could be illegal — that any human being, in his or her very existence, could be illegal — freezes my soul Views
Thursday, November 02, 2017
The Trump Government Has Basically Kidnapped This 10-Year-Old Girl
Basically, it’s kidnapping. Were the Border Patrol agents wearing MAGA hats when they grabbed Rosa Maria Hernandez as she left her hospital room? “It’s a shocking case — the most outrageous case I’ve ever seen. Is it a preview of things to come?” ACLU attorney Michael Tan said to me about the...
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“Within capitalist models, individuals of other species are not only neglected — their very existence is denied.” Views
Thursday, October 26, 2017
Praying for the Moths and Beetles
“. . . insects as a group are in terrible trouble and the remorselessly expanding human enterprise has become too much, even for them.” And instantly I’m beyond the realm of anything I know, as I consider the gradual disappearance not of whales but of . . . beetles, moths and hoverflies, thanks to...
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The Pentagon, aligned with corporate America, has a budget that grows larger every year. Sixteen years ago, the Executive Branch declared war on evil itself. As far as I can tell, the only freedom it holds dear is the freedom to keep on fighting this war, which means to continue causing enough harm — killing enough civilians — to engender sufficient outrage that insurgencies keep emerging, justifying further intervention. Views
Thursday, October 19, 2017
A Country, and a Future, Worth Serving
America’s endless war quietly moves across the broken nations of the world. Every so often, U.S. soldiers die, as four Green Berets did several weeks ago in . . . Niger. And the news was more about the adequacy of presidential condolences to the families of the slain soldiers than the point of our...
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Thursday, October 05, 2017
The Violence Comes Home Again
In the wake of the Las Vegas massacre, as in the wake of all the high-profile mass shootings that preceded it, the big question looms: Why? John Whitehead puts the question this way: “What is it about America that makes violence our nation’s calling card?” This is the enormous question — you might...
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But we don’t sing anthems about “political solutions,” which are always flawed and imperfect. I fear that the shallow impulsiveness of Donald Trump aligns too easily with militarism and empire: with armed arrogance. Views
Thursday, September 28, 2017
The Courage To Kneel
Kneel, touch the earth. “Oh say can you see . . . ” The anthem starts. I can feel the courage . . . of Colin Kaepernick, the (then) San Francisco 49ers quarterback who refused to stand for the national war hymn, not when one of the wars was directed at Americans of color. Occupying the public...
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Thursday, September 21, 2017
Reclaiming the Truth About Vietnam
“From Ia Drang to Khe Sanh, from Hue to Saigon and countless villages in between, they pushed through jungles and rice paddies, heat and monsoon, fighting heroically to protect the ideals we hold dear as Americans. Through more than a decade of combat, over air, land, and sea, these proud Americans...
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North Korea Views
Thursday, September 07, 2017
Begging for War
"There are no good options," Brian Williams said the other night on MSNBC , launching a discussion about North Korea with the implication that war—maybe nuclear war—is the only solution to the problem it represents. We've been cradling our own suicide for seven decades. The baby's eyes open... And...
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"We do not yet have nuclear disarmament, but because of Tony de Brum, an international movement for this is gaining political traction." Views
Thursday, August 31, 2017
The Man Who Stood Up To Armageddon
Suddenly it’s possible — indeed, all too easy — to imagine one man starting a nuclear war. What’s a little harder to imagine is one human being stopping such a war. For all time. The person who came closest to this may have been Tony de Brum , former foreign minister of the Marshall Islands, who...
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