Some “safe spaces” are more equal than others

    I realize that I’m really old and terminally uncool, as well as white and male and a member of the privileged oppressor class, but, well . . .   Okay, I’m just going to blurt it out:   It makes little sense to me that leftist students at a university (!) would need [Read More…]

Bernard Lewis at 100

    Here are some words of appreciation (from several authors) for the man whom I consider the greatest living scholar of the Middle East in the English-speaking world:   http://www.nationalreview.com/article/435984/bernard-lewis-100-birthday-appreciation-friends-admirers   I used some of his work on the Isma‘ili Shi‘is and the “Assassins” in my doctoral dissertation and, years later, employed another of his books [Read More…]

Cthulhu in 2016!

    One report is now saying that Mitt Romney definitely won’t be entering the race for the White House:   http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/436045/donald-trump-mitt-romney-forgoes-further-criticism   Which, if true (it probably is, but it has been questioned), leaves me thinking, given Hillary Clinton as the virtually inevitable Democratic nominee and Mr. Donald Trump as the almost certain Republican nominee, [Read More…]

How to win friends

    “The only way to have a friend is to be one.”  (Ralph Waldo Emerson)     [Read more…]

From the “Chicago Tribune”: “Mitt Romney should run for president”

    http://my.chicagotribune.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-87368889/   I don’t know that it’s enough to persuade him.  But it has to be gratifying, after his 2012 loss, to have various people imploring him to run.   I’ve made no secret of my preference:  I wish he would.   An honest, competent, decent, modest, honorable candidate.  And a grown-up.  How [Read More…]

“Others in the Land?”

    The archaeological record is clear:  The New World was far from uninhabited when Lehi and his party arrived (and even, for that matter, when the Jaredites arrived).  And yet the Book of Mormon doesn’t seem to mention the presence of anybody else.   This seems to be a problem.   But is it, [Read More…]

Of pornography, public health, and Utah’s state legislature: Chapter 48,072 of “Those Crazy Mormons”?

    The resolution declaring pornography a “public health crisis” that was recently passed by the Utah state legislature has drawn considerable attention nationally and even internationally, most of it mocking.   But not all of it:   https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/in-theory/wp/2016/05/27/the-anti-porn-movement-is-growing-the-public-is-just-catching-up/   It’s not entirely beyond the realm of possibility that the laughably puritanical and hyper-religious rubes [Read More…]

“Remembering Elder L. Tom Perry one year after his death”

    My wife and I came to know him somewhat, and we miss him still.  In my experience with him, he was unassuming, humble, good-humored, and unfailingly kind.  So I was happy to see this little retrospective item in the Deseret News:   http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865655171/Remembering-Elder-L-Tom-Perry-1-year-after-his-death.html     [Read more…]

“The world is getting more religious, because the poor go for God”

    The so-called “secularization thesis” is, it seems, a provincial myth:   http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/belief/2016/may/26/the-world-is-getting-more-religious-because-the-poor-go-for-god?CMP=share_btn_tw   And, while on that topic, you might enjoy this, too:   Louis C. Midgley, “Christian Faith in Contemporary China”     [Read more…]

“We are but a moment’s sunlight, fading in the grass.”

    My wife and I went to a viewing tonight for a young woman who died suddenly and unexpectedly a week ago last Sunday, at only twenty-two years of age.  We didn’t know her, but we’ve known her father for many years and have sometimes worked on shared projects with him.   It was [Read More…]