Fear at Home and Abroad

I probably should not vent about my students’ parents on my blog, but I am feeling a bit frustrated. The stabbing of an American student in Israel is certainly a cause for concern. Like any parent would, I have imagined my own son traveling abroad as a student and being in that situation, being stabbed and [Read More…]

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More Research Needed

Doing more research is admirable, when that is one’s overall approach to a topic. But when you find that you don’t need to do further research before insulting whole ethic groups and religious bodies, but supposedly do need to do further research before insulting a very famous hate group that is without any doubt guilty of murder and terrorism, [Read More…]

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#GunShaming not #PrayerShaming

The Mike Luckovich cartoon above should help explain (to the deliberately obtuse who claim not to understand) why people who say “stop praying and do something” are not opposed to prayer per se, but are saying yet again that prayer without action is meaningless, much as the Letter of James says faith without works is [Read More…]

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Et YouTube, Brutus?

Via He Has A Wife You Know. Reminiscent somehow of the sacred selfies I shared recently. [Read more…]

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Wahabi Time-Traveler

This cartoon from Evolving Perspectives finds a very clever way of using science fiction to satirize those Muslim extremists who are murderously opposed to artistic depictions of Muhammad. [Read more…]

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The Murders at #CharlieHebdo

Anyone who has seen the cartoons published in the French magazine Charlie Hebdo will know that they were deeply shocking and offensive. But no one deserves to die for being offensive. It isn’t satirical cartoonists who dishonor Muhammad. It is people who kill satirical cartoonists in his name. According to Islamic tradition, when Muhammad and [Read More…]

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Too Much Freedom, Still Not Enough

Plato’s Republic discusses how democracies devolve into tyrannies. When freedom is made an end in itself, the desire for unlimited freedom eventually sets a course towards anarchy, with people living in fear as nothing and no one is restrained, until eventually someone offers to bring things under control and restore order and security. When a democracy [Read More…]

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Mass Murder is Never of God

Hemant Mehta shared the above church sign, asking for captions. Mine as a liberal Christian would be something like, “I love it when Christians have enough faith, courage, and moral conviction to disagree with the Bible.”   [Read more…]

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Abraham “Heard Voices”

It is important to tread carefully when something tragic is in the news, such as Aaron Alexis' recent shooting rampage at a Navy yard. But my students are continuing to discuss the Abraham story and the Euthyphro today, and we simply cannot bypass the question of how one would react to someone in our time [Read More…]

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Dangerous Superstition

I saw a news article today about the murder of Narendra Dabholkar in Pune, India. Dabholkar was an activist opposing superstition and blind faith. He was killed, not by a spell or a lightning bolt, but by human beings whose love of superstition of whatever sort did not give them supernatural power. They used technology, [Read More…]

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Freedom of Speech = Freedom to Insult, to Criticize, and to Apologize

Many of the recent discussions about “free speech” in connection with the internet video about Islam called “Innocense of Muslims,” the violent reactions to it, and the apologies for it, seem to me to miss the point. In our democracy, within limits to ensure that the safety of people is safeguarded, people can express themselves [Read More…]

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