I have rediscovered my faith in Christ in recent years and come to terms with my Mormonism. My quest seems to be one of finding where it is that I fit within Mormonism. I am not talking about political liberalism. While political liberalism is my primary area of academic interest, this is not a post about the tired and boring question of "Can a Mormon be a Democrat?" Instead, I am thinking of liberalism in a religious sense. I often… Read more

For now, I will let Michael Walzer answer that question. Walzer is professor emeritus at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in Princeton, New Jersey. He is also the co-editor or the leftist magazine Dissent. In this clip, Walzer talks about the history of just war theory. He also addresses elements of his own thought on the matter. In the post-Vietnam-era, few have done more to advance just war theory than Michael Walzer. Talk a listen: (Source: Big Think) For… Read more

Last night, James Taylor was joined by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the Utah Symphony for a performance in Salt Lake City. I here traffic in downtown Salt Lake City was pretty crazy last night! I found this video of Taylor performing “Shower the People” with the Choir and the Symphony at the LDS Conference Center. (video from Utah Desert) Okay, I am not even a huge James Taylor fan, but I loved that! Now, go shower the people around… Read more

(h/t: Big Think) Bill Nye: Denial of evolution is unique to the United States. I mean, we’re the world’s most advanced technological—I mean, you could say Japan—but generally, the United States is where most of the innovations still happens. People still move to the United States. And that’s largely because of the intellectual capital we have, the general understanding of science. When you have a portion of the population that doesn’t believe in that, it holds everybody back, really. Evolution… Read more

Wait! He has made speeches stating we should strike. He has sent Secretary of State John Kerry to Congress to make the case for war. Okay, now read between the lines. Politics is almost completely a matter of symbolism. It is even more so in the new media age of the 21st Century. I tend to think that the activists and the partisans struggle most to see the symbolism of what is going around them. They are too close to… Read more

Can a male be a feminist? Before we can even start to address this question, we first much ask the question “What do we even mean by male or female?” For this I think Judith Butler has a lot to offer on this question: Mormons are essentialists to the extent that we would make Plato blush, particularly on issues of gender. It appears that Mormon Feminism has largely jumped on the essentialist bandwagon, even when defining Mormon Feminism. This may… Read more

Pope Francis has called Saturday September 7 to be a day of fasting and praying for peace in Syria. The Associated Press reported the following about his address last Sunday from St. Peter’s Square: “With utmost firmness, I condemn the use of chemical weapons. I tell you that those terrible images from recent days are burned into my mind and heart,” the pope said, in an apparent reference to photos and TV images of victims of chemical weapons in Syria…. Read more

UPDATE: (September 8, 2013) My praise did not help Mr. Rudd in the Australian elections on September 7. Mr. Rudd and his Labor Party got crushed. He will no longer be prime minister and has announced that he will step down as head of the Labor Party. Kevin Rudd is the prime minister of Australia. In a recently televised Q & A, Rudd offered a response to a question about why he changed his position on gay marriage. His response… Read more

I am not an Atheist, though I consider many Atheists amongst my friends. Fellow Patheos Blogger Rebecca Hamilton shared a video of the Steve Martin performing “Atheists Don’t Have Songs.” A you might expect from Steve Martin, the song is a satirical and it will make you smile. I think I prefer Martin the banjo man more than I do Martin the actor. The song is more a satire of the image people have of Atheists than it is of… Read more

I do. I really like Tim Tebow. His NFL career may be over, I have no idea. But I am sometimes sickened by the malevolent attitude some people have towards him. It seems as though they are rooting for the guy to fail. Back in the January 2012, we were still living in Wyoming. We were in the Denver media market and got watch a lot of Tebow the season before they brought in Peyton Manning. I wrote the following… Read more

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