George Will: Pope Francis' fact-free flamboyance

WASHINGTON — Pope Francis embodies sanctity but comes trailing clouds of sanctimony. With a convert's indiscriminate zeal, he embraces ideas impeccably fashionable, demonstrably false and deeply reactionary. They would devastate the poor on whose behalf he purports to speak — if his policy prescriptions were not as implausible as his social diagnoses are shrill.

Jim Dey: Killing of witness raises legal, election issues

The February 2013 investigation into the murder of a witness in a criminal case is closed, even though authorities have identified the shooter.

George Will: Changing their lives behind bars

CLEVELAND — About a mile from where the Cleveland Indians test their fans' patience, there is a facility that expresses Ohio's attempt to temper justice with patience. The facility resembles a school, except for the razor wire.

Jim Dey: Parkland leaders tackle rumor head-on

Two top Parkland College officials recently sent a lawyer-reviewed letter to school trustees in which they denied having an affair.

Jim Dey: Of spending questions and frenemies

The shoes keeping dropping at the College of DuPage, the state's largest community college in Glen Ellyn.

Last week, the school fired two top financial officers, the consequence of an audit that revealed questionable spending and misguided investment policies.

Meanwhile, Robert Breuder, the school's president, remains on paid administrative leave pending discharge proceedings.

Jim Nowlan: Remap a winner this time?

This column runs the risk of being boring ("So what's new?" readers wonder) because we have been here before. But the topic of redistricting reform is important. It represents the one fundamental thing you can do to refresh Illinois politics, say its backers.

Real Talk: Katrina was African-Americans' 9/11

I'm listening to Leon Bridges' "Coming Home." Bridges is an R&B/soul revivalist; he looks like David Ruffin, writes like Smokey Robinson and embodies the cool of Sam Cooke and the soul singers of the early '60s. His lyrics, in songs like "Brown Skin Girl," however, reflect the "black is beautiful" themes of the late 1960s' Black Arts movement.

Jim Dey: Madigan goes on offensive after setback

Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan doesn't lose often, and when he does, Madigan doesn't like it.

Dan Corkery: Listening to new voices

Last March, this section received a challenge — wrapped in a compliment.

"I've said for a while (even on the air) that, with everyone reading and writing only on their favorite Web pages, one of the only places in town where different political opinions show up together is your commentary section."

Reluctant Townie: Kim Davis and the thing with religion

Kim Davis is the worst kind of Christian and Kentuckian. If you think she's a hero, may God have mercy on your dumb, petty soul.