A Beautiful Teacher: A Tribute to Maya Angelou

I had the opportunity to listen to Maya Angelou on February 28, 2010, at a one-hour talk she gave at Ohio State University. I was nearing the end of my doctoral studies, finishing my dissertation. I'd grown cynical of intellectual celebrity and was a bit seduced, if not confused, by some of the orthodoxies of university teaching fads and ideas.I was prepared to scoff at this larger than life poet and her adoring fanatics.Her presence alone captured my immediate attention and respect and … [Read more...]

The Perils of Private Consensus: Or, In Praise of Mommy Blogs

(Preface)My previous post, "Fear of Generosity," comes dangerously close, I fear, to self-help. It was not widely popular in terms of traffic or noise making, but it seemed to resonate with people. Perhaps there are things that, cheesy or not, sometimes need to be said plainly and in terms that verge on the prescriptive. So be it. If you agree, please continue to tell me and I'll respond by trying to write more of it.In this post, I'd like to outline a danger I've observed in public … [Read more...]

Fear of Generosity

If you speak to someone about something controversial, like abortion or war, in intimate and full confidence, you will usually hear a vastly different story from the one we routinely hear and see in public, no matter what the opinion is or what side is taken. This is understandable. There are real liabilities to being open and honest. Anyone who has told the unvarnished truth many times in public has been punished for it.Liabilities aside, there is still a serious problem: in place of … [Read more...]

When the Soul Gets Blues, The Blues Get Soul

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My socks, underwear, and toiletries are stuffed into two guitar cases and a 1945 tube amp. My pedalboard arrives at the studio tomorrow with my shirts and pants and pedals and cords. My wife and children and I will leave tomorrow morning for the Twin Cities (where they will stay) and from there I'll head to Pittsburgh where Dan Bozek, the studio engineer and producer, will pick me up and take me to Steubenville where I'll be recording my first full-length studio album, Late to Love. I was … [Read more...]

A Hesitant Defense of Cliven Bundy

I've stayed away from the Bundy story until now. It seemed like the latest bit of 24-hour news sensationalism, and I still think it is. Even as I type these words I'm not exactly interested in the whole story. I don't plan to do my homework and could care less what I've missed or what will show up later.I only became interested in the story after the racial remarks Bundy made that were decried by every ideological color on my spectrum of social media. That was what caught my attention.I … [Read more...]

“Musings” on LATE TO LOVE with Iguana

Almost two years ago, my good friend and fellow philosopher of education (at Hofstra University), Eduardo Duarte (a.k.a. "Professor Iguana," his radio deejay name), began "Musings," an experimental community radio project trying to think and talk about about the relationship between philosophy and music or even the idea of philosophy as music and vice versa.I've been the featured guest twice and today we recorded the first of an eventual trio of conversations focused on my forthcoming album, … [Read more...]

‘God’s Not Dead’ is Sort of Catholic? UPDATED

More here soon, for now read this: Though it is frequently described as a “Christian film” (which it is), the fact is not always mentioned that the two men who penned the screenplay are devout Catholics, Cary Solomon and Chuck Konzelman. Read the interview at the National Catholic Register.I'll post a longer update soon, after I teach class this evening. If you haven't read it yet, I'll be referring to my review of God's Not Dead, here.UPDATE:I don't really feel like typing more eff … [Read more...]

#GodsNotDead Soars on Bald Eagle Wings: Or, Postmortem Apologetics

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WARNING: Spoilers abound (not that they really matter).(Preface) As a film, a work of art, a motion picture, a combination of acting, light, camerawork, editing, postproduction, color, music and more, as that sort of thing that is interested in beauty for beauty's sake, a story and good writing and all the complexities of directing and the tragicomic, in that respect let me be very clear: God's Not Dead does not qualify to be called a 'movie' in the artistic sense. To judge it alongside the … [Read more...]

The End of the World Starts at the Beginning

Your never delayed, but always on time, weekly apocalypse, in eight points:1. The latest discovery of Jesus's wife has overshadowed the much more serious and credible discovery of the city of Atlantis, unreported by the always-biased media, where a scroll is said to exist proving definitively that Jesus also had a husband along with several pets, among them a camel who had a phobia of passing through small, tight entrances.2. The University of Notre Dame will honor Kevin Miller, a … [Read more...]

An Immigration Manifesto by Artur Rosman and Sam Rocha

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(Cross-posted at Ethika Politika.) Immigration has been reduced to two options: the naïve and ahistorical legal route or the sentimental and anecdotal one. Both approaches and parties argue one side or the other, and the politics and rhetoric generated from that empty strategy are as clueless and predictable as they are terrifying. The terror of the present situation at the border between the United States and Mexico is that it risks becoming institutionalized, branded into the flesh of our col … [Read more...]


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