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A note from the editor.
What Reason Can Know and What Government Should Legislate: A Rejoinder to Arkes
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.
Judging Beliefs and Shaping Laws: A Reply to Robert Miller
Legislators and judges not only can but must gauge the moral justification of every law.
Driving to Nebraska: Cinema, Human Dignity, and the Elderly
At times, cinema succeeds where philosophy fails. Films like Nebraska show us the importance of honoring our elderly parents and remind us of the unique dignity of every human person.
Professor Arkes and the Law
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.
Journey to Baby Gammy: How We Justify a Market in Children
Materialism, relativism, and consequentialism are at the heart of the arguments in favor of third-party reproduction.
Scholastic Metaphysics: Edward Feser’s Introduction
Edward Feser’s latest book gives readers who are familiar with analytic philosophy an excellent overview of scholastic metaphysics in the tradition of Thomas Aquinas.
Traditional Religion in Space
Traditional religion, with its reliance on an authoritarian God, its understanding of humans as sinners, and its grounding in particular times and places, provides the only stable foundation for affirming the sanctity of human life and enabling human flourishing in new cosmic situations.
The Pleasures of Prudence: How Over-Regulation Hurts Doctors, Teachers, and All Workers
Workers must have the freedom to develop real expertise and to exercise this rational mastery in pursuit of good ends. Only in the pleasures of prudence can we truly realize those excellences of which human beings are capable.
Obamacare: Text and Intention
Confronted with its legislative weaknesses, defenders of Obamacare are appealing to the law’s intent instead of its text. This is a dangerous approach that the founders clearly rejected.
Tracking Christian Sexual Morality in a Same-Sex Marriage Future
Churchgoing Christians who support same-sex marriage are more likely to think pornography, cohabitation, hook-ups, adultery, polyamory, and abortion are acceptable. And it’s reasonable to expect continued change in more permissive directions.
The Santa Barbara Killings: When Envy Becomes the Deadliest Sin
The writings and videos of mass murderer Eliot Rodger reveal a young man eaten up by envy and demonstrate the reality of evil.
Law and Morality in Public Discourse: How Christians Can Rebuild Our Culture
It’s in seeking Jesus Christ with all our hearts that culture is built and society is renewed. It’s in prayer, the sacraments, changing diapers, balancing budgets, preaching homilies, loving a spouse, forgiving and seeking forgiveness—all in the spirit of charity—that, brick by brick, we bring about the kingdom of God. Adapted from an address delivered August 6th at the Archdiocese of Toronto’s “Faith in the Public Square” symposium.
A Time for Heroism
If we hope to protect the unborn, promote sexual integrity, preserve the truth about marriage, and defend the freedom of religious conscience in our country, we cannot simply live good lives—we must live heroic ones.
A Caution against Compatibility: On Natural Rights and Natural Law
While Adam Seagrave offers a provocative and original reading of Locke, his assumptions about the self and ownership are deeply problematic.
Who Deserves Respect?
Civility is due not to a person’s opinions, but to the person himself.
Protecting the Religious Liberty of Adoption and Foster Care Providers
Provided agencies meet basic requirements protecting the welfare of children, they should be free to operate according to their values, especially their religiously informed beliefs about marriage. New legislation introduced this week would protect this right.