7 Reasons Why Muslims Are Not Silent About ISIS

Before Christians (or anyone else) try to make the serious claim that Muslims are not against the barbaric atrocities of ISIS, I would ask them to Google "Muslims denounce ISIS" --- or learn Arabic and do more thorough research.I did the former. In what follows are some of the results I found on the first page.*First, a statement from a group of Imams of the UK:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Bd0Y6qWmlA&feature=youtu.beSecond, Indonesia, home to the world's largest Muslim p … [Read more...]

A Paradox of Empire: Thoughts on Iraq 2014

On Thursday, President Obama authorized a limited re-entry into Iraq, making him the fourth consecutive US president to carry-out military action against Iraq, from the First Gulf War of Bush I, Clinton's bombing of Bagdad in 1998, Bush II's pre-emptive war of 2003, and now Obama's selective bombing of ISIS. This happens along with increased military conflict between Israel and Palestine and Russia's re-emergent threats, most of all against the Ukraine.Each side of the US establishment has the … [Read more...]

I Saw a Picture of a Beheaded Girl Today

I hold my daughter firmly, hands hooked under arms, fingers pressing tight but not too tight; I hold her out, away from my body, and she smiles at me, with her six little teeth. She must feel weightless, her legs kick and wiggle. I've never been in love like this before. She wears cute dresses, with chubby arms and legs that stick out like a plastic doll. Her hair curls and falls in her face, so I blow it away and she giggles. She is the most beautiful thing in my life. She will turn one this mo … [Read more...]

Is Conservatism Worth Conserving?

Of course it is. Without question.The term 'conservative' can be understood in a variety of ways, but I am not interested in qualifying or justifying that here.The post I cited yesterday only told part of the story, because all stories are, ultimately, parts of a greater whole. What I didn't mention was my extended engagement with a conservatism that went far beyond the scope of Rush and the EIB network.Here is the excerpt on that, to balance the scales: My Conservatism does not come from L … [Read more...]

CNN Exposes Socialist Catholic Archbishops

CNN's recent story about Catholic Archbishops is purportedly about their lavish homes, but in reality the story is about the sometimes lavish homes they live in, not the ones that they own. This distinction is a fine one, but it demonstrates what most Catholic clergy share in common: by and large they do not live in privately owned property. In many cases they take vows that absolutely disallow the ownership of private property.This exposes a pre-Marxist socialist principle, recalled this past … [Read more...]

How Being a Poor Lay Catholic Missionary Changed My Politics

CNN just ran a rather unqualified story on the residences of Catholic Archbishops in the US. Joanne McPortland, Deacon Greg, and Jennifer Fitz cover it in rich and fair detail.The story affected me in a personal way. It pricked something in me that may serve to explain some my more deeply felt political intuitions.*I wish we would share how our lived experiences shape and form our politics. Behind every bumper sticker is a story. At least there should be.Being thoughtful and reflective ab … [Read more...]

Welcome to the Cafeteria: The Catholic Showdown Started Long Ago

Pope Francis has obviously turned up the volume on a number of issues, and this has generated criticism from those who identity themselves as American conservatives.There are religious voices that rival and complicate the voice of First Things in prominence, at places like Ethika Politika and The American Conservative and elsewhere (including here at Patheos). The more traditional alternatives like Commonweal and America seem to be on the ascendancy.It has become somewhat fashionable to giv … [Read more...]

Images of a Past Still Present: When Children Become Objects

There was a time, not too long ago, when adults heckled children --- protesting the school integration movement.Sometimes these protests became physically violent.But there can be violence in a look.There can be violence in a word. The time of adult violence against children is not over.There was a time, long ago, when --- as Billy Kangas reminds us --- a child named Jesus was an undocumented refugee, too. … [Read more...]

“The incendiary scene reminded me of Nativist mobs” — Dolan on the Dignity of Immigrants

Yesterday, Timothy Cardinal Dolan posted a brief note at his site where he unambiguously reprimands those treating immigrants with hostility and scorn.A week or so ago, I watched with shame as an angry mob in southern California surrounded buses filled with frightened, hungry, homeless immigrants, shaking fists, and shouting for them to “get out!”It was un-American; it was un-biblical; it was inhumane.  It worked, as the scared drivers turned the buses around and sought sanctuary else … [Read more...]

A Christian Case Against the Literal Reading of Scripture

If being a Christian is to be a follower of Jesus Christ, then it follows to think that Christians ought to be like Christ.In many cases this might prove difficult. We do not know everything Christ did on Earth in the finest detail. In other cases, when overextended, this would be silly. It would be outrageous to say (as some people sometimes imply) that women cannot be Christians, because Jesus Christ was a man.Here we see that even when trying to be a Christ follower it is crucial not to … [Read more...]