Guns vs. Refugees: Hypocrisy Illustrated

We see one practical example of the above in the decision of Republican politicians to remove laws that restricted the access of people with mental illnesses to guns. [Read more…]

Restrict Guns’ Access to People

Scott Paeth gave me permission to share something he wrote on Facebook: I just had a flash of insight on the whole gun debate: Pro-gun people are absolutely right — in the absence of human beings to abuse them, guns can’t do any harm. Therefore the solution to this dilemma is simple: The guns should [Read More…]

What Isn’t Religion?

I had a hard time even figuring out what to call this post. My friend and colleague Brent Hege gave a wonderful lunchtime talk today about religious freedom, during which he mentioned the difficulties that face attempts to define religion, and the ways in which the definition of religion assumed in discussion of such matters as separation [Read More…]

Answer to America’s Prayers

Both Hemant Mehta (who shared the above cartoon by James MacLeod) and Lauren Nelson blogged about the recent shooting in Lafayette, Louisiana, and their sentiments were along similar lines. Prayer often emerges from a feeling of helplessness in the face of circumstances beyond our control. But prayers about shootings are like the person who prays not [Read More…]

Heterosexual Marriage Under Threat (Map)

Fred Clark shared this helpful map, showing all the states where the Supreme Court’s marriage equality decision poses no threat to traditional heterosexual marriages. Meanwhile, Mike Huckabee has released this campaign image: If it doesn’t disturb you, it should. Because on the one hand, what it says is quite obvious. Did anyone not know that “the [Read More…]

Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Faith

The Butler University Seminar on Religion and World Civilization got off to a wonderful start this year, with a session focused on freedom of religion as defined in the first amendment to the United States Constitution. Our three guest speakers were Sheila Seuss Kennedy, Rick Garnett, and Dan Conckle. Some who have attended many of [Read More…]

Limits to Religious Freedom

Since Tuesday is Constitution Day, and I will be gathering students from my course on “Religion and Freedom of Expression” soon for the first time to talk about Randall Bezanson’s book How Free Can Religion Be?, I thought I would see if there is interest in discussing the topic on this blog. As a starting [Read More…]

The US Constitution and Religious Texts

Thom Stark wrote the following on Facebook: In the late 18th and early 19th centuries, if someone didn’t like the Constitution of the U.S., they criticized it. In the 21st century, if someone doesn’t like it, they claim that it says what they’d rather it say. That’s because the Constitution has become a religious text. [Read More…]

DOMA and Prop 8 Struck Down

In a 5-4 decision, the United States Supreme Court has struck down the Defense of Marriage Act! Read the text of the decision here. A key quote from towards the end: The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and to injure those whom the State, by [Read More…]

The Ten Recommendations

When I saw yesterday’s Non Sequitur cartoon, it reminded me of something that I run up against regularly in class: For today’s students, the Ten Commandments have always been ten “recommendations” or “suggestions.” No matter how strongly they were ingrained in them from an early age, they have not had the status of law – apart from [Read More…]