It's time now for your letters. Earlier this week, we remembered Andy Griffith. He died Tuesday at the age of 86. Griffith starred in five different TV series, made more than 30 movies and even won a Grammy for his gospel album. But his most defining role was that of a sheriff in the fictional town of Mayberry, North Carolina.
ANDY GRIFFITH: We never talked about it, but the backbone of the show and the thrust of the show was love, the deep regard that these people had for one another.
Time now for our weekly look at politics with columnists David Brooks of the New York Times and E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and the Brookings Institution. Good to see you both.
E.J. DIONNE: Good to see you.
DAVID BROOKS: Good to be here.
SIEGEL: Those anemic job growth figures came out. As we heard, President Obama is campaigning in Ohio and Pennsylvania, paying special attention, I should add, to auto plants. E.J. first, how does President Obama campaign effectively on a recovery that is sputtering this way?
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.
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And I'm Melissa Block. The third and largest gathering of the so-called Friends of Syria took place in Paris today. Envoys from 107 nations came together to discuss how to put an end to almost 16 months of violence that has left thousands of people dead.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.
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And I'm Robert Siegel. Major League Baseball's 83rd all-star game will be played on Tuesday in Kansas City. To talk about baseball at the halfway point in the season, we are joined now, as we are most Fridays, by sportswriter Stefan Fatsis.
STEFAN FATSIS, BYLINE: Hey, Robert.
SIEGEL: And going down the all-star rosters, it looks like a lot of new names in this game.
Novelist Jess Walter's most recent novel is Beautiful Ruins.
At dawn, the sun curls across the lake's placid surface like a twist of lemon on a gin martini. Easing into my kayak on this glacier-cut, 12,000-year-old lake, I feel as I always do on its water: alone in the world.