The mom busted for letting her kids walk home

The mother accused of child neglect for letting her children walk home from the park by themselves tells her story. [Read more...]

Our dynastic politics

Under monarchies, the throne is kept in the family, with subsidiary power passed on through powerful aristocratic families.  Under our democratic republic, a good many of our presidential contenders so far are the scions of political families:  Clinton, Bush, Romney, Paul.

Columnist Dana Milbank has some interesting things to say about this phenomenon. [Read more...]

Letting kids walk home as child neglect

A 10-year old-boy and his 6-year-old sister were walking home from a park in an affluent Maryland suburb.  The police stopped them and are now investigating their parents for child neglect.

The parents are said to be part of the “free-range” parenting movement.  But I walked seven blocks to and from school from the time I was in the first grade, aged six.  And once I could ride a bike, the whole town was my playground.   My parents, who were not part of any movement, certainly weren’t neglecting me!  Are the times that much more dangerous today?  Evidence would suggest not, and yet letting a six-year-old walk to school like that probably seems unthinkable to most parents.  (It’s unthinkable to me, thinking of my grandchildren!) [Read more...]

Supreme Court will settle gay marriage

The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case that will, in effect, decide if the Constitution requires all states to have gay marriage. [Read more...]

Replacing marriage

Isabel Sawhill is a liberal scholar who has spent much of her career defending marriage from cultural developments and government policies that have weakened the institution.  She has been pro-marriage not for moral, spiritual , or cultural reasons but because the data is overwhelming that children do better with two parents and that married couples do better economically.

But now she is giving up.  She says that marriage is in such a weakened state that we need to come up with alternatives that will have the same economic and child-care benefits.  See what she is proposing after the jump.  How do you think these would work? [Read more...]

He will build you a House

We are on the road for Christmas, and we worshipped on the last Sunday of Advent at the church where my son-in-law is the pastor.  (As of now, our Advent Christmas embargo is over.)   Rev. Ned Moerbe preached on the Old Testament text for the day, 2 Samuel 7, in which David had the idea of building God a house; that is, a permanent Temple to replace the Tabernacle tent that the children of Israel had used as the place of sacrifice since the Exodus.  But God, through Nathan the prophet, tells David not to build Him a house; that He would build David a house, an eternal house, prophesying the perpetual reign of  David’s descendant, the Christ.

In the course of the sermon, we were told that the custom in the ancient Biblical cultures was when a couple was betrothed, they waited to get married until the groom built his bride a house for them to live in, either a separate structure or an addition to a family home.  This would probably have been the case with Joseph–whose profession as a carpenter, in the original languages, was not so much a builder of furniture but a builder of houses–and Mary, his betrothed.  And this speaks to us of Advent. . . [Read more...]