What others say: Marathon a fitting tribute for Patriot's Day

Monday’s 118th running of the Boston Marathon displayed in full measure the resolve and unity meant by “Boston strong.”

A year after explosions at the finish line killed three people and injured 264 others, an expanded field of more than 35,000 runners included victims and their relatives, first responders, others “personally and profoundly impacted” by the tragedy and nearly 5,000 runners who didn’t get to finish in 2013.

Unprecedented security — more than 3,500 police officers and 800 National Guard troops — made sure that the race went off without incident, even with an estimated 1 million spectators lining the 26.2 miles from Hopkinton to Back Bay.

And in what can only be called a storybook ending, Meb Keflezighi of San Diego — defying the odds at 38 — became the first American to win the iconic race since 1985. He wore red, white and blue, had names of bombing victims on his runner’s bib and broke down in tears at the finish line. “At the end, I just kept thinking, ‘Boston strong, Boston strong,’” he told reporters afterward.

It seems fitting that the one to break the Kenyan stranglehold was Keflezighi, who emigrated from Eritrea when he was 12 and made his own American dream come true. “God bless America and God bless Boston for this special day,” he said.

It was just another day in federal prison for accused Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 20, awaiting his trial scheduled for November that could result in the death penalty. It also shows America’s values — including a bedrock belief in the rule of law — that he will have his day in court, afforded all the protections of the justice system. The Obama administration wisely resisted calls to take a quicker path and put Tsarnaev before a military tribunal. A marathon is a good metaphor for the hard work of our democracy.

At times, events weighted with so much emotion and symbolism can veer off course. Monday’s marathon stayed true, a sincere tribute befitting Patriots’ Day.

— Sacramento (Calif.) Bee,

April 23

More

What others say: Obama took right tack on Cuba

There’s no solution to the half-century old Cuba problem that will satisfy everyone, but we strongly believe President Obama made the right decision to end the troubled “wet foot, dry foot” policy.

Read more

What others say: Obama’s legacy a mixed one

President Barack Obama leaves office Friday after eight years as the most consequential Democrat to occupy the White House since Lyndon Johnson. And unlike that Texan, whose presidency was born in tragedy and ended in failure, Obama will not have the ghost of the Vietnam War haunting his days and eating his conscience as LBJ did all the remaining days of his life.

Read more

Op-ed: Trump won the news conference

Donald Trump should do press conferences more often. Not for the country’s sake, certainly not for the media’s sake, but for his. He really shouldn’t have waited 167-plus days to hold one, because the man gives great sound bite. Although I’ve participated in probably thousands of these staged encounters as a reporter, they’re not my favorite way of getting news — you almost never get any. The guy at the podium controls the proceeding. He can get his message out with little challenge from the assembled journalists who are limited to a question and a follow-up, maybe. Politicians can bob and weave through that without any of us landing a blow. And that’s our job: to penetrate the canned responses to their version of the controversy du jour and get at whatever truth they are hiding. Besides, Trump — who uses contempt for the media as a weapon, his preferred way to discredit reporting that displeases him —has a wonderful forum to do that. At the very least he should hold these confrontations as a supplement to his Twitter tirades. And frequently. It’s his opportunity to hold the media hostage as they cover live his rain of abuse on them.

Read more

Good luck in Juneau

The 30th Alaska Legislature gavels in on Tuesday, and we’d like to take a moment to wish our Kenai Peninsula legislators good luck over the coming months in Juneau.

Read more