February 22, 2016

Not too long ago, I wrote in the Salt Lake Tribune that I feel an affinity for the many folks who are revoking their LDS church memberships, these days, but that I am not planning to resign.  In the same piece, I wrote, “I don’t think anyone should resign”. I rather regret writing that notion in that way.  In my zeal to come in under my word limit, I left out much of the nuance that really is necessary. So, here’s… Read more

February 12, 2016

Here at the college at which I am still, remarkably, employed, students are performing a version of The Vagina Monologues, which consists of a series of solo discourses on vaginas, mostly written by real women out there in the real world, who have honest-to-goodness, real vaginas.  The monologues are performed by women, who also have real-life vaginas, in the material, imminent presence of an audience, so that there can be no mistaking what’s present.  It’s a global and an annual… Read more

February 10, 2016

  First, let me say that even while I concede that I know next to nothing about today’s popular music, I nevertheless genuinely, honestly, sincerely think “Coldplay” is a perfectly lousy name for a band.Second, let me affirm with vigor that I have nothing against Her Fantabulance, Beyoncé.Third, let me admit that, because I do not live in London, I have not seen Peter Brook’s new Mahabharata play Battlefield; however, I did see Brook’s former Mahabharata play at the Brooklyn… Read more

February 1, 2016

“Eff the ineffable”, wrote Terry Eagleton in an attempt to figure out Samuel Beckett’s work.  “There must still be a trace of truth in the world.”* Everything is torn open by why—a hole, a great, ragged rip in a reality.  There we hang, in the inexplicable, in the hole, from knots stabbed into our ribs, wondering why. Modernism thrashed and cried in this void.  Postmodernism accepted that no rescue was coming.  Post-Postmodernism—we may as well name it—wonders why we ever expected… Read more

January 22, 2016

By all that is holy, Ruth should never have left Moab.  I know, I know: your god is my god, and all that.  But believing is no excuse for being a Moabite.  According to revealed policy, no matter what commitment she might have made to Naomi and to god, Ruth and her offspring ought to have been summarily and permanently excluded from hanging out with god’s people. Deuteronomy’s revealed policy on the matter does not equivocate: “An Ammonite or a Moabite shall… Read more

January 11, 2016

Blog Editor’s Note: Dear readers, all seven of you—On account of a confrontation this past week between myself and an indignant troll, I find myself in a county cell awaiting bail, which, I am confident, my family has nearly arranged.  I begged them to sell the Watteau for my sake.  The mixed news is that the troll remains in the hospital.  On the one hand, I feel badly for him.  The term “rabies” has been used, though I’m sure it’s… Read more

January 1, 2016

Name the most genuinely religious song in the songbook that the LDS church has approved for the Sunday spirituality of children. For outsiders, the LDS church (often mis-identified as the Mormon church) has made a great effort over the past half-century to restrict decision-making power among adherents to the smallest possible number of men, residing in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. All matters of LDS spiritual life are determined by Salt Lake City fiat, from what notions of god are… Read more

December 19, 2015

Taxation, some say, started it all. Or a census. Augustus, some say, decreed an accounting. Some say he didn’t. Some say he did, but not before Herod, so something in the start of the story is screwy, in any case. Two accountings, some say, to make everything fit. I don’t know. If I had to choose, and some say I do, I suppose I’d come down on the side of screwy. Some say they lived in Bethlehem. Some say they… Read more

November 30, 2015

Nietzsche, famously or infamously towards the end of the nineteenth century, declared the death of god.  All of us pushing the twenty-first century forward can roll our eyes and concede that Nietzsche didn’t see a century in which god would be so very much alive.  If nothing else, the increasing apoplexy of the new atheists attests to god’s ongoing existence, if not god’s burdensome omnipresence. God is alive and active in humanity’s world.  Clearly, whatever Nietzsche’s reasoning, god’s not going… Read more

November 6, 2015

As of yesterday, assuming the news stories are right, if you’re three days old, innocent, helpless, completely free of complicity with the ugliness of the world, the LDS church will not allow any ordained member of the church to give you a ceremonial name-blessing, if you also happen to be the natural or adopted child of same-sex parents. That’s not all.  The LDS church will not allow any ordained church member to baptize any eight-year-old, who is the child of same-sex… Read more

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