No more tears for the Confederate Flag

I got a call late on Wednesday, June 17. The ring jolted me out of sleep into a confused, nearly panicked state. When I answered, the voice on the other end told me there had been a shooting in Charleston, that it had happened at a black church, historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church (Mother Emanuel), [Read More...]

Changing Indiana: How RFRA got fixed

The last time I wrote about religious liberty for this blog, I had been inspired to do so by many conversations with friends and coworkers, musing about how we might be able to take a few steps forward and, as progressives, rightfully claim this issue as our own. About a month later, we watched the kerfuffle in [Read More...]

A Note on Community

It’s not enough to talk about community. It’s not enough to quickly wave hello to your neighbors, then hustle into the safety of your home (though we all do it). Real community happens when you ask and answer honest questions. It happens when you console someone, lift someone up, or find a solution to a [Read More...]

Dems Ought to Lay Claim to Religious Liberty

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” This is the first amendment. It protects, among other things, [Read More...]

The Thing About Jesus

Okay, so there are a lot of “things” about Jesus. But the thing I’ve been meditating on most recently is his mind-blowing capacity to meet people exactly where they are. It seems like a simple concept, but we struggle day in and day out to accept people as children of God. Instead, we tend to [Read More...]

An Evening with David P. Gushee

Last week, Evangelical scholar and Christian ethicist David Gushee visited The University of Virginia to give two lectures. I attended the first – “Sacredness of Life,” which received its title from his latest book.  If I recall, the poster advertising his visit said something along these lines. “Christian Ethicist David P. Gushee argues that culture [Read More...]

What’s in Your Portfolio?

Late Saturday morning, I was sitting in my favorite Charlottesville coffee shop with my dad and uncle.  They were in town for a basketball game but we had a few hours to spare so I decided to show them one of my favorite places to work. Just before it was time to head to the [Read More...]

The Murmur of Military Violence Drones On

Everyday, it seems, I read tweets and news snippets announcing that, “Obama launches drone attacks on Pakistan” or Yemen or Iran. And every time, I struggle to reconcile my conception of the man I voted for with the man who is responsible for these distant, unmanned attacks. People who study international affairs or foreign policy [Read More...]

The World is About to Turn

Recently, I heard a story. A friend’s father ran into the superintendent of our local school system and struck up a conversation. She mentioned that they, like many other cities and counties on the East coast, had closed schools in anticipation of Hurricane Sandy. Fortunately there wasn’t much damage where we live. Unfortunately, the decision [Read More...]

For Dreamers

Nearly a month ago I wrote, “We put our foot down against the hateful and discriminatory sound bites about immigrants and their children.” And yet, they keep on coming. In a recent article by Ann Coulter, insensitively titled “America Nears El Tipping Pointo,” she writes, “I apologize to America’s young people, whose dashed dreams and [Read More...]