Marco's Blog

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L'America: How Could Trump Be Elected?

2016-11-26 10 min read marco
I know, I know… I’ve heard this from all my friends and readers: How is it possible that Donald Trump would get elected President of the Greatest Nation in the World? (OK, the part about the Greatest Nation in the World is my addition.) There is a technical reason: despite getting more than two million votes more than Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton didn’t have her votes distributed in a geographically diverse enough way. Continue reading

L'America: This Presidential Election, Though…

2016-10-22 7 min read marco
I’ve been making you wait forever, and yet I’ve been fielding questions and listening to comments for an entire year. Now, two weeks or so before the election, it’s time to weigh in. What’s the deal with the Presidential election? From an alien’s perspective, it’s a really odd deal: on one side, there is a mix of Berlusconi, Netanyahu, and Putin; on the other, a combination of Merkel, Thatcher, and Nicola Sturgeon. Continue reading

L'America: What Really Happened to Theresa Halbach?

2015-12-24 22 min read marco
Netflix is trying something new. This time, a documentary spanning ten hour-long episodes about a murder case. Seems like an incredibly long time for a single case, considering that other shows present the “same” content in a few minutes and then move on to the next. I thought for sure it would end up being boring. Instead, I found it gripping, a true blueprint for a new brand of show, not unlike when Truman Capote jump-started the true crime fiction genre with his In Cold Blood. Continue reading

L'America: What Do I Do When My Green Card Expires

2015-11-10 4 min read marco
I mentioned how (slightly) disappointed I was when my green card finally arrived. It simply came in the mail in an unmarked envelope. I wasn’t expecting a ticker tape parade, and it was certainly convenient. After so many years of tribulation, though, it seemed a little unspectacular. Wait ten years, and the thing expired. I had set a reminder in Google Calendar, but somehow it disappeared. Then, one horrifying morning, I woke up and checked. Continue reading

L'America: The Republican Primary

2015-10-21 13 min read marco
Stop hounding me, already! Yes, I will explain the Republican primary to you. And get that smirk off your face: after all, for every Trump there has been a Berlusconi, and for every Huckabee you had a Harper or an Abbott. Primaries. When voters elect a person, instead of a party, it makes no sense to have a random set of characters show up. It’s smarter to pick a single candidate and pool all the votes of a group together. Continue reading

L'America: Obergefell v. Hodges

2015-07-15 9 min read marco
Just in time for Gay Pride parades in much of the world, the Supreme Court of the United States announced that marriage was a universal right that couldn’t be withheld from same-sex couples. The world turned rainbow for a day, much happiness and sadness ensued, and a few readers asked me to explain what happened. Here is my account for the America-challenged. First, the ruling was not unexpected. In fact, the big suspense in June was whether it was going to be big majority or small majority ruling. Continue reading

L'America: Please, Read My Christmas Letter!

2014-12-18 6 min read marco
It’s that time of the year again! I get more nostalgic of Old World charm, missing out on Christmas Markets, panettone, Lebkuchen, and wildly flashing trees in the countryside. Time to acquaint you with the quaintest of American traditions, especially since it’s slowly dying out! The first time I saw a Christmas letter I had no idea what it was. It had all the appearance of a letter: it was a piece of paper with writing on it; the writing was of personal nature; we knew the people that had sent it to us. Continue reading

L'America: Are Canadians Too Nice?

2014-12-12 4 min read marco
When you live in America, there are two national stereotypes that pop up frequently and are as pervasive as they are puzzling: Brits have bad teeth, and Canadians are too nice. The stereotypes are not only pervasive, they are thought of perfectly harmless and worthy of making fun. If you have watched American comedies, you will have seen the buck-toothed, yellow-stained Brit smile. Also common, the Canadian brute that turns all polite. Continue reading

L'America: Michael Brown, Darren Wilson, and Police Racism

2014-12-10 7 min read marco
A number of you have asked how it is possible that a police officer shoot an unarmed person and is not just not punished for it, but not even investigated. Such was the case of Darren Wilson, a police office in Ferguson, Missouri, who shot and killed an unarmed 18-year-old. I’ll go to say in general that I agree that police has a greater latitude on the use of force than an average person. Continue reading

L'America: The Supreme Court on Gay Marriage

2014-10-09 5 min read marco
A few have asked me to explain the meaning of the refusal of the Supreme Court to review gay marriage again. Let’s start with the technicalities: The Supreme Court of the United States, unlike many Constitutional Courts around the world, is the overall ultimate instance and doesn’t just decide matters of constitutionality, it has broad sweep of the legal landscape and its rulings are binding on everyone in this country. It is also free to choose the matters it wants to tackle. Continue reading
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