Three in a casket

Anyone concerned about America’s fertility industry should ponder “21st Century Babies” being posted in installlments on the the New York Times website. Writer Stephanie Saul is doing an excellent job of revealing the moral dilemmas and, frankly, distress and suffering that may occur when potential parents decide to try in-vitro and intrauterine insemination. Here’s the [Read More...]

The man from hope?

Over the past few days, I’ve been wondering about the significance of religious or quasi-religious words in a culture in which a shared understanding of these words appears to be disappearing. My curiosity was first piqued by a column by Gene Lyons in Salon. The critic argues that an interview (not so much the act?) [Read More...]

Got news? Democrats’ house divided

It’s fair to say that nine-term Michigan Democrat Bart Stupak is not a poster boy for conservatives, even for conservative Democrats. An opponent of the Iraq war, active on environmental issues, watch him being skewered above by radio host Rush Limbaugh for his criticism of advertising by the pharmaceutical industry. But Stupak, a former police [Read More...]

The prince of piece?

Let me own up to being on the losing side of the great American dialogue about guns. Linked to my pro-life beliefs is a deep skepticism that the answer to violence on American streets is owning guns to use in self-defense. Thus I find it unsettling when pollsters, as Pew did last spring, track a [Read More...]

Abortion: new data, new controversy

Is the U.S. public moving towards a more conservative, or perhaps a less generally permissive, attitude towards legalized abortion? There’s some really fascinating new information out from the Pew Research Center, suggesting such a shift. But not so fast, mes amis. As soon as the data arrived, so did the deconstructionists. I found reading this [Read More...]

But what would Father(s) want?

Let’s return to one of my favorite hot-button topics, the role of religion in the public schools. Whether it sets a precedent or not, the question of how to teach religion in the Texas schools is roiling the State Board of Education, schools, and activists concerned either that religion isn’t getting a fair shake or [Read More...]

Shameless plugs for Godbeat pros

In an era in which the definition of journalism itself seems to be up for grabs, it’s a pleasure to praise Godbeat journalists recognized for superior writing by their own colleagues in the Religion Newswriters Association. Troll the list of the 2009 RNA awards, and you will see a few names you may know, either [Read More...]

The anti-Gosselins

Sometimes religion stories are about what happens at the sweeping level of doctrine, traditional and denominational controversy. And sometimes journalists have the chance to inspire readers to ponder the question –could I do that? A story about a Chicago family of eight who has recently adopted two children from Ethiopia is another home run for [Read More...]