Rather than rush to a fifty-state “solution” on marriage policy for the entire country, the Supreme Court should allow the laboratories of democracy the time and space to see how redefining marriage will impact society as a whole.
Finding a right to same-sex marriage in the Fourteenth Amendment would threaten the religious liberty of citizens and organizations who support marriage and silence or chill the speech of dissenters.
According to a recent amicus brief by scholars of liberty, same-sex marriage is not only counter to the Supreme Court’s long line of personal liberty cases, it may even be prohibited by them.
The dark and troubling history of the contemporary transgender movement, with its enthusiastic approval of gender-reassignment surgery, has left a trail of misery in its wake.
Americans need to understand that the endgame of the LGBT rights movement involves centralized state power—and the end of First Amendment freedoms.
Those suing to overturn state marriage laws are not merely asking the Court to recognize a new right. They are asking the Court to declare that the Constitution removes this issue from democratic deliberation.
Redefining marriage undermines the ties between marriage and procreation. This will contribute to already declining fertility rates in the United States as marriage rates drop and marriage becomes even more adult-centric in meaning and function. The consequences to the economy and society will be harmful and multifaceted.
Fewer than 9 percent of the countries belonging to the United Nations have redefined marriage to include same-sex relationships—and only one of those did so via its judiciary. A judicial redefinition of marriage would make the United States an extreme outlier on the global stage.
More than fifty million people have, by their votes, demonstrated that they continue to understand the profound importance of marriage. They deserve better than to have the decision to protect or redefine marriage taken out of their hands by the Supreme Court.
Antonin Scalia is one of the most brilliant, principled, sound, and thoughtful jurists ever to sit on the Supreme Court. But twenty-five years ago today, his legal skills utterly failed him.
A group of distinguished conservative public servants, policy makers, and political operatives has signed an amicus brief saying the US Constitution requires the states to redefine marriage. They argue that this is the truly conservative position—but it takes quite a bit of logical contortion to accept their argument.
The metamorphosis of marriage from a gendered to a genderless institution would send the message that society no longer needs men to bond to women to form well-functioning families or to raise happy, well-adjusted children. That would be bad news for children of heterosexuals on the margins: the poor, the relatively uneducated, the irreligious, and others who are susceptible to cultural messages promoting casual or uncommitted sex.
Same-sex parenting is not unique in the alternative family landscape. What is unique is encouraging an alternative parenting structure guaranteed to deny a child’s right to a biological parent.
Cubans are ready for change—even if it comes by way of violence.
Anti-Catholic animus or simple error disguised as history or art will not advance our understanding of a complex and divided period of conflict.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s life left a vital legacy of civil courage rooted in transcendent truth. His death is an example of joyful hope amidst suffering.
Thomists don’t believe that animals go to heaven, but not for the reasons that David Bentley Hart seems to think. Unlike human beings, non-human animals are entirely corporeal creatures—all matter and no spirit.
Monica Lewinsky has reappeared on the national stage and is speaking out against cyberbullying. Perhaps she should consider addressing the breakdown of the American family instead.
Religious liberty is precisely what allows a pluralistic society to live together in peace.
Justice Ginsburg praises the heroic women who defied Pharaoh’s authority to save the Hebrews’ baby boys from death. Apparently, she does not have an eye for contemporary parallels.
It’s fine for people to express disagreement with the Indiana RFRA—if they know what’s in it. We must not allow ourselves to be manipulated by political propagandists into mob hysteria.
The reprieve provided by surgery and life as a woman was only temporary. Hidden deep underneath the make-up and female clothing was the little boy hurt by childhood trauma, and he was making himself known.
On August 2, 2018, Pope Francis announced an update to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, making a prohibition on the death penalty official Catholic teaching. Prior to this change, many scholars believed that the historic teaching of the Church did not declare capital punishment intrinsically immoral, even if the practice is, as a matter of prudence, not required in countries with modern prison systems that can safely isolate dangerous criminals. Other scholars argued that the natural law duty to respect all human life does in fact render any intentional taking of human life morally unacceptable, and that this development of doctrine does not contradict any infallible teaching. The articles below lay out this debate, with clear summaries of the arguments on both sides.
Intentional killing is always wrong, and support of capital punishment often stems from a misunderstanding of the nature of human dignity.
If one accepts the legitimacy of punishment and the principle of proportionality, then it is impossible to claim that capital punishment is intrinsically wrong.
Nothing that a man does can change his nature as man, and so, considered in himself, it will always remain wrong to kill him. This should be the final judgment of practical reason when brought to bear on the question of capital punishment.
While not explicitly denying the principle of proportionality, Tollefsen implicitly rejects it, leaving his argument not only counterintuitive but incoherent.
The presumptive starting point in the natural law and, more specifically, Christian tradition is one of absolute opposition to intentional killing of beings created in the image of God, for which exceptions must be earned; but the traditional justifications for such exceptions fail.
Edward Feser and Joseph M. Bessette’s new book asserts that Catholics cannot legitimately reject the death penalty as wrong always and everywhere. They are wrong. Part one of a two-part essay.
Four conditions must be met for a teaching of the Catholic Church to be considered infallible. Acceptance of the death penalty meets none of them. St. John Paul II laid down theoretical markers that provide a clear basis for a Catholic teaching rejecting the death penalty in principle. Part two of a two-part essay.
Arguments against the death penalty can be made not only on the basis of theology but also on the basis of natural law philosophy. The first in a two-part series.
There is a genuine tension, not just in Aquinas but in Church teaching more generally, between claims about the intrinsic goodness, sanctity, and inviolability of human life, and claims about political authority to kill. The second in a two-part series.
E. Christian Brugger is wrong: neither scripture nor tradition could justify a reversal of the Church’s millennia-old teaching on capital punishment
If E. Christian Brugger is right, then the Church has been teaching grave moral error and badly misunderstanding scripture for two millennia. Nothing less than her very credibility is at stake.
Aquinas taught the principle that a punishment ought to be proportionate to the offense, where death is a proportionate punishment for the gravest crimes.
It’s three times more likely that you’ll die of lightning than that Aquinas will turn out to be wrong about something. The same cannot be said of New Natural Law philosophy.
Reason operating without error judges that no human being should ever intend the death of another human being for any reason whatsoever. No achievable good can justify such a choice. And that is the foundation for the case against the death penalty.