Today, the fanaticism of activists, the ambitions of elite political operatives, and the passive passions of an apolitical public combine to determine our nation’s immigration policy.
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Both believing and non-believing students of Strauss will find Leo Strauss and His Catholic Readers rewarding.
Thanks to the work of sociologist Mark Regnerus, a prominent peer-reviewed journal has retracted a deeply flawed study on how social stigma affects the life expectancy of sexual minorities. This failure of peer review isn’t an isolated case: the more social science research supports the dogmas of identity politics, the less closely it is examined, and the more enthusiastically it is promoted.
Far from being an exercise of self-expressive freedom, as some suggest, pornography binds internally, its addictive properties consuming its consumer under a tyranny of license both brutal and total. It denies our humanity as well as our liberty by moving us away from human speech and toward bestial voice.
Can we hold to the truths of the Declaration of Independence—that we are endowed by our Creator with natural rights and that government derives its just powers from the consent of the governed—without undermining respect for those natural duties and natural relationships that do not depend on our consent?
On February 4th, 2019, U.S. Senator Josh Hawley delivered the following remarks in support of the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.
How should Catholics understand the contradiction between the nineteenth-century papal teachings on integralism and the twentieth-century teaching of the Second Vatican Council? We follow the solution of John Paul II and Benedict XVI: we take both sets of teachings at face value, admit that they contradict each other, and explain that the earlier teachings were merely doctrina catholica, which are not absolutely binding and are thus subject to future change.
Fr. Richard John Neuhaus got to the central question facing us: Is it true that postmodern liberal societies are incapable of sustaining the religious values without which they could not have been born, and without which they cannot long function? Neuhaus was unwilling to surrender to that proposition. Neither should we be.
To faithfully apply the original public meaning of liberty protected by the Constitution—that is to say, to be a faithful originalist—one must acknowledge that both a contractarian view of individual liberty and a Whig view of the liberty to make laws were held by the founding generation.
Business leaders are turning to the modern mindfulness movement to make their employees happier and more productive. But what is mindfulness? And do its practices really work if they are motivated by the desire for profit?
There was an opportunity in 1787 to have torn up slavery by its roots, and that opportunity was missed. But the missing came as much through overconfidence that the march of opinion would wipe out slavery on its own, and as much through the miscalculations of political compromise, as through any conscious policy to foster or promote slavery.
American Muslims must seek to preserve the American constitutional settlement against encroachments by totalitarian secularism because doing so means preserving what remains of a civilizational order that proceeds from belief in God.
For ten years, Public Discourse has drawn on the insights of academics and scholars, political and legal advocates, and men and women of letters to offer the reading public thought-provoking reflections on the timeliest issues and the most timeless dilemmas of our public life.
Brown University researcher Lisa Littman has been attacked for publishing results that call into question the politically correct narrative about transgender youth.
Virtue ethics can help originalism maintain its integrity.
Intellectual diversity, academic freedom, and freedom of speech are means to an end, the end of truth-seeking. If a university does not retain its traditional mission of seeking the truth through reasoned discourse, it will not remain committed to freedom of inquiry or freedom of speech.
Leslie Rubin’s portrait of Aristotelian America and American Aristotelianism is an invaluable contribution to our understanding of our situation.
As the late Justice Scalia was fond of pointing out, the views of individual lawmakers in the midst of debate are not themselves the law we must interpret. Neither are the votes taken in a deliberative body rightly viewed as votes on anyone’s interpretation of the text under discussion. The text that they passed, not what they said about what they passed, is the law.
By calling our attention to the Founders’ political theory of the family, Thomas West’s new book leads us to ask whether a secular theory of natural rights and natural law can sustain the moral ecology necessary for self-government. If a secular natural-rights republic cannot sustain the family, it would seem to be neither a good nor attractive political theory.
Please use your influence as a major donor to persuade the Southern Policy Law Center to amend its embittering and unproductive campaigns to label any political or social issue opponent as a hate group. Although controversial, organizations that fight to protect the unborn and strengthen families are not motivated by hate. Vilifying them only worsens our toxic and polarized political climate.
If we want a different politics, ultimately we must offer a different moral imagination for ourselves, our children, and theirs.
Patrick Deneen’s Why Liberalism Failed is a provocative attempt to explain what’s wrong with our culture, how this came to be, and what might be done about it. Although his historical account of liberalism is unpersuasive, he offers a prescient analysis of the current moment and insightful prescriptions for constructive action.
It was Christianity, not modernity, that separated church and state. It was modernity, not Christianity, that sought to bind them back together. And, at day’s end, the American order has more in keeping with the Christian apostasy than with either antiquity’s sacral political orders or modernity’s rejection of the claim that there exists any domain outside the jurisdiction of the modern state.
A recent conference on Christianity and liberalism brought together high-profile Catholic scholars who strongly disagree about whether Catholicism is compatible with liberalism in general and the American version of it in particular.
Originalism is the commonsense, traditional American approach to constitutional interpretation, not a contemporary conservative invention.