June 20, 2018

“Thanks for contacting Human Life International,” spokeswoman Deborah M. Piroch replied when I contacted HLI to ask if the pro-life organization had an official position on the situation at the U.S.-Mexico border. “We really focus on our five mission areas, those being abortion, contraception, marriage and family, artificial reproduction and euthanasia/assisted suicide.” When I asked whether separating children from their parents falls under marriage and family, Ms. Piroch said: In a sense it does. However, we focus on the religious… Read more

June 14, 2018

Today, June 14, 2018, was the 82nd anniversary of the death of G.K. Chesterton. I thought I’d say a few words about who he was and what he did, and why people who haven’t given him a try maybe ought to. In 1900, Chesterton, an art school dropout, was working for a London publishing house when he was asked to contribute some articles on art criticism to a magazine, thus beginning one of the most productive careers in literary history…. Read more

June 14, 2018

In Las Vegas, as long as you’re gambling, the drinks are free. In Granada, Spain, as long as you’re drinking, the tapas are free. Yes, you could say both the casino and the bar are trying to take your money, but at least the tapas bar wants to feed you, both body and soul. Anthony Bourdain, who traveled the world – Grenada and beyond – to show us all how food and drink feed both body and soul, in his… Read more

June 8, 2018

“Lord, who is my neighbor?” This is a thornier question than it appears on the surface, and Jesus’ answer is just as unsettling. Exhibit A: gay marriage and its opponents. Monday, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Colorado baker who in 2012 refused to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple. It was what the court calls a “narrow decision,” meaning not that it was a close vote (it was 7-2), but that the High Court decided… Read more

May 24, 2018

“Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.” —Gabriel García Márquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude   It has been on my mind the past year to re-read Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude. I have not read it since college, in the 1980s. We read it for a class on developing one’s political philosophy, taught by the late, great Prof. James T. Murphy, at… Read more

May 19, 2018

I am going to politicize a tragedy. U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has gotten more than $360,000 from the National Rifle Association over the years, making him the gun rights group’s biggest recipient of campaign cash. Friday, May 18, Dimitrios Pagourtzis, seventeen, exercising his Second Amendment rights, murdered ten of Sen. Cruz’s constituents and injured ten more. I woke to news of the mass shooting, at Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas, following knee surgery Friday morning…. Read more

May 19, 2018

  Note: first published in February, 2018, as a guest post on Suspended in Her Jar. Reprinted by permission. I will post a reaction to Friday’s school shooting later today. -spd Seven days after seventeen Florida high school students were gunned down in the third worst school shooting in American history*, a motion to take up an assault weapons ban failed in the Florida state House of Representatives 36-71. The representatives chose to keep assault weapons on our streets while survivors… Read more

May 17, 2018

Before Friday, May 4, the last arena rock concert I attended was The Who, in 1982, in the late, lamented Checkerdome in St. Louis, home of the St. Louis Blues hockey team. May 4, I with my wife and youngest son saw U2 in Scottrade Center in St. Louis – which is now the home of the Blues. I guess I’ve come full circle. It’s not that I don’t like live music. I do. But the bands I like play… Read more

May 17, 2018

The Illinois House resolution condemning white nationalism, which I wrote about last week, was voted out of committee May 16 on a unanimous, bipartisan 6-0 vote. It’s gotten four more co-sponsors, two Democrats and two Republicans. I’ll keep updating as it advances. See, Tennessee? This isn’t so hard. Read more

May 15, 2018

If you read one book by Tom Wolfe, it should be The Right Stuff. What makes The Right Stuff great, and not merely very good, is that Wolfe is not content to merely write about manly men doing manly man stuff. He gets to that eventually, but first – and probably alone (or at least the first) among the chroniclers of the early years of the space program – Wolfe asks what would not be obvious others: what was it… Read more

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