On the Castile Verdict and Violence Against Muslims

A note I posted on Facebook today:I've tried to keep these notes to a minimum and even have tried to share and post less things related to the barrage of politics that one must (I think) keep up with these days. But I need to note two things:The failure to convict the officer who shot Philando Castile is being roundly condemned by activists and also by several conservative outlets and thinkers, but on the whole, I don't think the scale of that scandal is well appreciated. The Black Lives … [Read more...]

Notes In Defense of Rod Dreher

 My review of Rod Dreher's book, The Benedict Option, has been replied to by the author. I will compose write a reply to it tonight, but before I do, I think it is important for me to mention some reasons why I think Dreher should be defended from some of his critics online right now.Credentialism - I don't care how many degrees or diplomas someone has or doesn't have. MacIntyre, for instance, does not have a Ph.D., and good for him. To put down Dreher for credentialist reasons is … [Read more...]

On the US Dept of Education

Around the time of the Devos nomination, a lot of people were sharing the Wikipedia-informed idea that the Dept of Education was invented in 1979 and that if we just blow it up then we will lose the federal schooling apparatus. Sorry to burst your bubble, folks, but that story is sophomoric in the sense that it has a death grip on one small fact to the ignorance of all others.The Common School Movement was a Whig party initiative that was passed state to state, but ALL THE STATES passed … [Read more...]

What do Simone Biles, Usain Bolt, and Katie Ledecky Have in Common?

What do Simone Biles, Usain Bolt, and Katie Ledecky have in common?They are Catholics competing in Hellenistic games. Poetic stuff. — Sam Rocha (@SamRochadotcom) August 15, 2016 … [Read more...]

All Terrible Things Must Begin Anew

Well folks, I'm back.More soon, but be alerted that I'm resurrecting my blog.A bit of housekeeping will take place and a very long opening post.Cheers,SR … [Read more...]


The blog is presently stowed away for technical reasons.In the meantime, I wish you all a very merry Christmas holiday season.SR … [Read more...]

I’d Rather Be Whole

Since the release of my album, just over a month ago, I've faced a number of related questions about the identity of this music I've made and, more intimately, my own identity as its maker. Many have wondered how my work as a musician can be reconciled to my work as an academic and a father. Others have wondered about the religious identity of my work, across its various mediums, and have been generous in allowing me to offer a series of difficult answers.In some cases, such as this review by … [Read more...]

An Incestuous Catholicism

There are three options: (1) participate, (2) participate critically, (3) refuse. This post aspires to be a refusal, but will inevitably become a critical participation.There is an analogy to be made between the large scale cycle of popular news and the tiny scale Catholic blogosphere and various websites and social media. The relationship between the two is twofold: in one case directly, in the other indirect. For one, the news cycle drives a large portion of Catholic commentary, especially … [Read more...]

Guest post from JD Flynn

This is a guest post from my dear friend JD Flynn.  It is the conclusion of our dialogue about the honorary doctorate conferred by our alma mater, Franciscan University of Steubenville, upon Michael Hayden, former head of the CIA.  You can read my initial post here, JD's first post here, and my response here.  I promised JD that if he wrote his response here, I'd point out that he's smarter and better looking than me.  He is.Sam Rocha is a pretty good guy.  Not all the time, but often enough.  … [Read more...]

On the Need for Ideological Relativism

One of the more vexing problems with public discourse today is that the keywords being used do not carry the same meanings or usages form one person to the next. The madness that ensues is in many ways to be expected when everyone not only uses terms differently, but also implies and suspects that those they disagree operate on bad faith, ignorance, or both.When words become barriers and dams, they are counterproductive. At the same time, when words are used willy-nilly, they don't help much … [Read more...]