Francis Beckwith discusses the indignation in some circles about catechists in the Roman Catholic Church being required to, you know, agree with the doctrines that they are supposed to be teaching.  In doing so, he employs a useful new word:  egopapism.  I define this as the belief that you yourself are your own infallible religious authority.   Read more

It isn’t just [some] Southern Baptists–or [some] Missouri Synod Lutherans–who are looking for a new name.  So are mainline liberal Protestants.   From Amy Frykholm: In a recent interview with the Century, historian David Hollinger talks about his preference for the phrase “ecumenical Protestants” to describe non-evangelical mid-20th-century American Protestants, instead of the more frequently used terms “liberal” and “mainline.” “Ecumenical” refers to a specific, vital and largely defining impulse within the groups I am describing. It also provides a more… Read more

The NCAA did not kill off completely Penn State’s football program, as was widely expected, but the sanctions for the child sexual abuse scandal and its coverup were pretty harsh: NCAA President Mark Emmert made the announcement Monday morning that the program would be hit with a four-year postseason ban and a $60 million fine. He called the case “unprecedented.” In addition, the school will be forced to cut 10 scholarships for this season and 20 scholarships for the following… Read more

New data shows that the poverty rate has climbed to the highest levels since the 1960s: The ranks of America’s poor are on track to climb to levels unseen in nearly half a century, erasing gains from the war on poverty in the 1960s amid a weak economy and fraying government safety net. . . . The official poverty rate will rise from 15.1 percent in 2010, climbing as high as 15.7 percent. Several predicted a more modest gain, but… Read more

So what can we say about the shootings in that Aurora, Colorado, movie theater? I’m sure we’ll learn more about the details–already I’m hearing different accounts–in regards to the 24-year-old James Holmes who is in custody for killing some 12 people and wounding more than 50 others at the Batman movie. Was he a crazed fan, acting out the role of the Joker, as has been reported (and disputed)? Is it time, as some will no doubt argue, to repeal… Read more

Though, as we posted, the Democrats are making a big deal of the villain in the new Batman movie being named “Bane,” as in Romney’s Bain Capital, John Boot reports that the film is explicitly, unabashedly Reaganite, an overt attack on the Occupy Wall Street ideology: If The Dark Knight was about the War on Terror, The Dark Knight Rises puts equal force and fury behind a tale about financial crisis and revolution. It’s the first Occupy Wall Street blockbuster,… Read more

So what will happen if religious and other pro-life institutions refuse to go along with the Obamacare contraceptive and abortifacient mandate? Under President Obama’s healthcare law, the HHS can levy $100 per employee, per day against institutions that won’t comply with the mandate. Therefore, religious employers with hundreds of employees could be fined millions of dollars each year. A 50-employee institution, for example, would face a penalty of $1,825,000 each year. “ObamaCare gives the federal government the tools to tax… Read more

Reniqua Allen, in lamenting the passing of The Bill Cosby Show,  complains about the way television today depicts black families.  In doing so, she makes some observations that have wide applications: Instead of a real look at black culture, Hispanic culture or any specific culture, we get “uniculture.” That’s how Felicia Henderson, creator of the Showtime series “Soul Food” and a newly minted executive producer of a BET family sitcom “Reed Between the Lines,” describes much of our current television… Read more

A controversy roiling in the atheist community is the prevalence of sexual harassment and its leadership’s indifference to the problem: As skeptics, atheists and humanists prepare to gather for their largest meeting in Las Vegas this weekend, attendance by women is expected to be down significantly. Officials for The Amazing Meeting, or TAM, said Wednesday (July 11) that women would make up 31 percent of the 1,200 conference attendees, down from 40 percent the year before. A month before the… Read more

The music industry is struggling because so much of its product can be accessed for free, what with YouTube and “radio” sites such as Pandora (setting aside illegal downloads).  But even when a person wants to buy music, it’s hard if you aren’t old enough for a credit card.  And it’s even harder if you want to buy music your parents wouldn’t approve of.  From Aaron Leitko: The Internet has given kids boundless opportunities to hear music gratis, but few… Read more

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