by on July 15th, 2018

Catholics today are not required to believe in a Catholic confessional state. If anything, they are required to believe that everyone has a right under the natural law to religious freedom, that the state has no authority in religious matters, and that coercion of religious activity by the state is morally wrong. In short, integralism is contrary to Catholic doctrine.

by on May 28th, 2018

The noble impulse to purge the public square of offensive and insulting language quickly degenerates into censorship of unpopular viewpoints. By contrast, the American experiment is founded on the view that a people capable of governing themselves are worthy of the trust that the First Amendment places in them.

by on January 11th, 2018

Many people do care—and care a lot—what the editors of First Things think about Christian-Jewish relations, and this time the galloping statism of First Things is doing great damage in the real world. Robert T. Miller calls on R.R. Reno to disavow the position Romanus Cessario takes on the Mortara case and to reaffirm the journal’s historical commitment to the freedom of religion as understood in liberal states.

by on January 7th, 2018

Leaders should get the facts straight before they start theorizing.

by on December 12th, 2017

Young people today, especially the ones who are serious about religion and look to the editors of First Things for guidance, must resist the allure of an intellectual Fortress of Solitude where they can sit and feel superior to everyone. Griping about the state of society is a waste of time. Part two of two.

by on December 11th, 2017

R.R. Reno’s manifesto on capitalism—in which he concludes, among other things, that expanding economic freedom leads to transgenderism—is based on empirically false claims. Part one of a two-part series.

by on June 19th, 2015

It’s not that in misery and suffering human beings grasp at foolish theories that give them some hope. Rather, amidst prosperity, human beings can blind themselves to the reality of the human condition and so never ask the questions that, once asked, cannot be plausibly answered except in theistic terms.

by on March 5th, 2015

A shopkeeper who objects to sex-same weddings but who nevertheless provides services at such weddings generally acts in a morally permissible way if he acts to comply with a validly-enacted law, to preserve the goodwill of his business, and to make a just profit. Nevertheless, a law that in this way coerces a shopkeeper to cooperate with actions he reasonably believes immoral is gravely unjust.

by on August 22nd, 2014

The existence of objective moral truth that is knowable by reason does not imply that people generally, much less particular public officials, will in fact know and embrace that truth. Very often, they won’t, and that is why systematic limits on government power, such as the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, are good laws.

by on August 19th, 2014

When the law limits the courts’ power to inquire into the truth or reasonableness of religious views, this is not because the law is assuming that religious beliefs lack rational foundation. Rather, it’s because allowing courts to exercise this power on a large scale would be too dangerous.

by on May 22nd, 2014

A policy that disempowers university officials from prohibiting student events on the basis of the viewpoint they express demonstrates institutional genius.

by on May 14th, 2014

A low but predictable inflation rate is sound, just policy.

by on April 14th, 2014

If we want to move public discourse in the right direction, we should rely on the many assumptions we share with most of our contemporaries.

by on November 5th, 2013

Just as an engineer can work out the purpose of a machine by examining its structure, reason can discover the proper end of human action by examining human nature. Yet there is also a supernatural morality that subsumes and exceeds natural moral standards.

by on October 2nd, 2013

David L. Tubbs’ criticism of pragmatic liberalism reveals that he misunderstands both the necessary complexity of constitutional law and its relation to civil society.

by on July 31st, 2013

While evolutionary theory shows us that we can’t divide living things into stable, distinct species, this doesn’t mean that it imperils the foundations of knowledge.

by on May 22nd, 2013

Aristotelian-Thomistic moral philosophy doesn’t imply that every economy should be capitalist.

by on July 13th, 2012

The legal institutions of a democratic and capitalist society are designed not to give people what is good and prevent them from getting what is bad; they are designed to give people what they want and not give them what they don’t want.

by on February 22nd, 2012

The fundamental problem with the mandate is that it coerces some people into doing what they think is wrong, and this problem remains regardless of whether the coercion excuses the actions of the people being coerced.

by on January 26th, 2012

A eudaimonistic ethical theory can show, without appeal to God, that certain actions are always wrong.

by on December 16th, 2011

Divine legislation functions to enforce moral absolutes, not to ground them.

by on March 15th, 2011

Aristotelian virtue ethics has very little to say about what is a good political structure or economic system.