Social Science Is Not Enough

All the science in the world does not answer the deepest questions of political importance. Pretending that questions of political priority are merely technical or scientific questions is the lie of modern times. Conservatives must relearn this lesson in order to defend essential public goods like marriage and the family.

Pro-Lifers Should Be Wary of Empty Pro-Life Rhetoric

Pro-life Democrat Michael Wear is right to be concerned about the 2020 Democratic candidates’ radical positions on abortion. But Wear’s suggestions for those candidates are long on political expediency and short on actual pro-life conviction. Pro-life voters shouldn’t let themselves be taken in by the deceptive “messaging” he recommends.

The Misery of Democratic Socialism


Bernie Sanders has openly declared “democratic socialism” as his guiding political and economic vision. Yet democratic socialism is incoherent as a philosophy and toxic as a way of economic and civil organization. It inevitably collapses into the abusive and destructive twentieth-century socialism we are familiar with. We should reject it unconditionally.

Judaism, Natural Law, and the Achievement of David Novak


David Novak is the only prominent Jewish natural law thinker in the world today. His work will be essential for that part of the Orthodox Jewish community that wishes to engage with our changing culture. In particular, for a defense of Orthodox Judaism in the modern world, it matters immensely that we understand the Jewish view of sex and sexuality to be a matter of mishpat, in the rational realm, the realm of natural law.

Immigration and the Desire for Rootedness

National conservatives need to help create an America that knows who she is, one that can give immigrants more than just a place to get a job—an America that can draw them in, giving them a sense of belonging. This essay is based on remarks delivered at the National Conservatism Conference in Washington, DC, on July 15, 2019.

Should Social Conservatives Embrace Nationalism?

Could a new national conservative coalition enable Burkean conservatives to harness populist energy, using public policy to strengthen the core American institutions of family, religion, and country? Or will it inevitably degenerate into dehumanizing racism and xenophobia?

“Do No Harm”: Not As Simple As It Sounds


The “Do No Harm” Act would gut the Religious Freedom Restoration Act by removing religious liberty protections that result in “harm” to others. That would be a mistake. Protection of any First Amendment rights inherently involves balancing competing harms on both sides of the ledger.

Sailing on the Ship of Fools

The values America’s elites cherish are not the incontestable truth of things, and they may even run counter to the deeper truths of American politics and human life. Those who aspire to lead our country—and to deserve to lead it—would do well to ponder these lessons by reading Tucker Carlson’s Ship of Fools.

Redemption Revisited

I had done This Thing for the simple reason that I felt I couldn’t be a single mother—because I was desperately scared of being ostracized by my community, judged for my irresponsible fornication.

Can Unalienable Rights Be Rescued from Human Rights?

Can the US Commission on Unalienable Rights help correct the international human rights paradigm? It all depends on how brave the Trump Administration and Secretary Pompeo are in translating the suggestions of the commission into public policy—both for the State Department and the United Nations.

Student Loan Crisis Is a Conservative Opportunity

Bernie Sanders has done a favor for conservatives. He has highlighted the harm that a bloated and unaccountable federal government can cause. In doing so, he has provided an opportunity for conservatives to build a strong alliance with millennials.

The Cracks in the Edifice of Transgender Totalitarianism


The transgender castle that radicals have constructed by sheer force of will is built on shifting sand without supports of any kind. The wave that will sweep it away is gaining strength. May the time come soon when we will all say, with observers of past hysterias, “How could we have believed that?”

Conscience, Fertility, and Holocaust Education

Baby, fertility

Strange as it may sound, the Holocaust education at my school shaped my sexuality and fertility well into adulthood by teaching me that the Holocaust brought about a complete break in the continuity of mankind. In the face of such immense suffering and slaughter, no responsible woman would choose to have children.

Secretary Pompeo: Don’t Forget That Human Rights Depend on Natural Law

When the champions of human rights promote rights that are not grounded in natural law, they undermine their credibility to speak for all human beings. Those who understand the truth about human rights—as every rational person has the capacity to do—will cease to trust the human rights community.

Building A Culture of Religious Freedom


Serve the poor. Help the weak. Protect the unborn child. Speak the truth about the beauty and order of creation: Male and female he created them (Gen 5:2). Fight for your right to love and serve God, and for others to do the same. Defend the dignity of marriage and the family, and witness their meaning and hope to others by the example of your lives. Adapted from an address delivered at the Alliance Defending Freedom Summit on July 9, 2019.

Selling the Rainbow: Why Rainbow-Washing Is Actually Bad Marketing


When you hitch your brand to a cause or movement that nearly every other brand is co-opting, you are not differentiating but rather genericizing your brand. That’s anti-branding. And when the cause or movement you choose has political overtones, you end up alienating, dividing, and disappointing your customers.

Politics as Usual


In Rucho v. Common Cause, the Supreme Court’s recent case on gerrymandering, both the majority and the dissenting opinions were heavy on pragmatics and light on constitutional interpretation. The heart of their disagreement is a difference of visions of how the judiciary ought to interact with the electoral process.

Is Billy Graham the New Jim Crow?

Laws like the Equality Act fail to acknowledge the reasonableness of Christian belief, assuming that only irrational bigotry can animate those who hold traditional views on marriage and sexuality. This loss of reason and regression to emotion-based policymaking is at the heart of our civic mistrust and zero-sum policy prescriptions.

Notre-Dame de Paris and Architectural Culture

The cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris is not simply an illustration in an architectural history textbook whose value is limited to documenting a style that was popular between 1190 and 1425. Rather, it is evidence of a way of conceiving and making buildings embedded in a culture and a religious faith that retains a hold on our imaginations and affections.