Is it any surprise that shooter Patrick Crusius called his attack “a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas” when the president himself uses this language?
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John Hughes’s classic film, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, confronts current schemes of “free college” with a perennial human problem: What is God calling you to do?
Wilfred McClay rightly senses that part of our current political confusion results from a lack of a common historical narrative, an ability to talk about the American past coherently. In our current moment there is thus a need to recapture important stories and narratives about America.
In eighteenth-century political reasoning and rhetoric, ministers and statesmen were not obliged to choose between pragmatism or piety, orthodoxy or heterodoxy, reason or revelation. As we grapple with the role of religion in the American Revolution, we should not impose false dichotomies routinely used by modern scholars but were unknown to their subjects.
Vice President Mike Pence has been invited to deliver the 2019 commencement address for Taylor University in Upland, Indiana. However, a severe backlash against the former Indiana governor demands that his invitation be rescinded. The accusations against Pence are fallacious, slanderous, and contrary to both a biblical worldview and a liberal-arts education.
Niccolò Machiavelli’s imprudence is surprisingly similar to that of Thomas More’s fictional character Raphael Hythloday. Since prudence is the virtue that finds practical means to moral ends, imprudence may consist in rejecting either practical realities (as does Raphael) or ethical principles (as does Machiavelli). To achieve justice, political regimes must reject both idealism and utilitarianism.
By establishing a national anthropology based on an ideology of self rather than embodied sex, the Equality Act would deepen cultural divisions and chill reasoned debate on complex bioethical issues. Those who do not accept the legislation’s totalitarian twisting of language would be open targets for a modern American parallel to Orwell’s “two-minutes hate.”
If the new conservative consensus emphasizes putting real Americans first, who are these real Americans? Are some Americans more equal than others?
The early Church saw challenges to truths about God, the Reformation-era Church saw challenges to truths about the Church herself, and today’s Church is confronted by challenges to truths about man—the being made in the image and likeness of God whom the Church is tasked with protecting. This essay is based on Ryan T. Anderson’s inaugural lecture as the St. John Paul II Teaching Fellow at The University of Dallas.
To defeat the Modern Heresy, we must promote truth in the face of relativism, structures of justice and mercy in the face of those of power, traditional familial love in the face of “the modern family,” and the redemption of sinful lives in the face of a tolerant culture that seeks to do away with sin altogether.
You do not need a license to practice history. Instead, all you need to do is work hard, do research, go to the sources, make the past meaningful, and write in a way that attracts readers.
If we are to correct the wayward course of contemporary democratic societies, we must preserve what is true and good and mitigate what is false and harmful in both liberalism and nationalism. We would do well to embrace core principles of the Anglo-American constitutional tradition—principles grounded in and sustained by the virtue of prudence.
Indifference to human life in the prenatal phase is the original sin of the multilateral system, enshrined in its constituent agreements and diligently propagated throughout its institutions. Nothing short of a revolution in international policy will do if the human rights project is to be truly reclaimed.
Reading recommendations from The Witherspoon Institute staff.
In a time when “safetyism” dominates many college campuses, the United States Military Academy at West Point can serve as a useful case study, offering important lessons in how to combat coddling in academia more broadly.
Public Discourse is launching two new features: short book notes and long form essays. They'll run occasionally, on Saturdays and Sundays. Today is our first longform essay. Enjoy.
Permission to own slaves and suppress false religions was taught by the Old Testament, never denounced by the New Testament, and accepted in word and deed for very long periods by popes, bishops, and saints. And yet the Church eventually repudiated such permission. So, too, with intentional killing in capital punishment. The fact that death is deserved and proportionate does not license the state or any human being to intend to impose it.
Public Discourse is launching two new features: short book notes and longform essays. They'll run occasionally, on Saturdays and Sundays. Today is our first book note. In it, Charles K. Bellinger reviews Katie Watson's Scarlet A, arguing that books about abortion often fail to address deeper and broader issues.
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.
Understood as an expression of the common law commitments on which it was built, our Constitution still supplies common terms in which we might re-transform our civic discourse into something rational and productive. The second in a two-part series.
Nothing asserted in Scripture read in light of the New Testament excludes the conclusion that capital punishment is inherently wrong. Nor does any definitive Church teaching. But the new revision of the Catechism, while removing from view an evident instability, remedies none of the underlying tensions and seems likely to obscure the only path to a teaching fully stabilized by adopting that conclusion authoritatively, as an authentic development of doctrine. And the revisionary documents are in other ways disconcerting. Part two of a two-part essay.
When we lie to ourselves about the moral status of other human beings, we not only unjustly injure other people, we also injure ourselves and our culture. We transform ourselves into a people who believe the lie. The costs of self-deception are internal and reflexive as well as external and consequential.
Rebecca Todd Peters’s new book is titled Trust Women: A Progressive Christian Argument for Reproductive Justice. Yet she totally dismisses the arguments and decisions of pro-life women. Perhaps a better title would have been “trust pro-choice women to make pro-choice decisions.”
The beautiful, happy 2018 Gerber Baby, Lucas, is lucky to be alive. Most children diagnosed with Down syndrome in utero are now killed before birth.