‘I was homeless, and you chased me away …’

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“There is a way to keep safe, clean grounds while helping our homeless neighbors — and it’s both easier and harder than installing sprinkler systems or putting up fences. It requires the investment of time and resources to build relationships, listen and help.” [Read more...]

Something like love should hold me up high


I don’t recall reading any interviews with Jon Stott about his leaving evangelicalism for the Anglican Church. It’s perfectly legal to execute an innocent person — William Rehnquist said so. The Eggman of Euclid is not the worst Ohio criminal on the loose. And two trailers that explain why I’ll probably be pretty unproductive next month. [Read more...]

Smart people saying smart things (3.9)

Ta-Nehisi Coates on “The Gangs of Ferguson.” Mychal Denzel Smith and Elias Isquith also read and respond to the DOJ report. Amelia Boynton Robinson remembers Bloody Sunday in Selma. Derrick Jensen on the unmasking of hatred. [Read more...]

Niebuhr and Aristotle and Jay Smooth


You can learn a lot about ethics and human nature from reading the collected works of Reinhold Niebuhr, plus the Nicomachean Ethics, and, say, Stanley Hauerwas and Alasdair MacIntyre. Or you can just watch this five-minute video from Jay Smooth, which sums it all up and stitches it together quite nicely. [Read more...]

It’s not hypocrisy, it’s a contemptuous distrust


Here we have a choice that — according to the pope himself — can be made for either good or bad reasons. As a spiritual leader, then, the pope has a choice to make about this choice. One possibility would be for him to teach and encourage his followers to make good choices for good reasons. Another possibility would be for him to preclude the possibility of his followers making bad choices by arrogating to himself the right to make this choice on behalf of everyone else. And he chose the second one. That is immoral and unjust. [Read more...]

Slavery and the Creation of a Counterfeit ‘Biblical Civilization’ in America: 1619-1865


The King James Version of the Bible was completed in 1611. The first African slaves were imported into Jamestown in 1619. “Biblical” Christianity and the idea of “biblical civilization” grew up alongside slavery. The latter shaped the former, and the two things have been inextricably intertwined ever since. [Read more...]

Religion, justice, the good, and Brenda Russell


Is religion the source of goodness and justice? Or is religion, rather, a formidable obstacle to those things? Yes. Both. Neither. Whatever. Point is, that goodness and justice stuff? I don’t care how you get there, just get there if you can. [Read more...]

Smart people saying smart things (12.28)

Michelle Conlin on how even black cops are made to fear the police; Ta-Nehisi Coates on the true agents of violence by police; Brittney Cooper and George Orwell on the enduring white fear of black rage. [Read more...]