September 16, 2020

I want to follow up on my post in favor of not outlawing trick-or-treating with some thoughts on how to make a pretty-safe activity into a more-safe activity. Some ideas: #1 You don’t have to do this. In terms of exposure to a respiratory virus, I think standard trick-or-treating is similar to going the grocery store.  Early on in the history of the COVID-19 pandemic, there was concern that touching shared surfaces could be a major vector of transmission; over… Read more

September 12, 2020

There’s a pandemic on, and it can be tough to find ways to let kids get out and have fun in a safe manner, especially if you want to do something that brings the whole community together in, say, a traditional cultural celebration.  So here’s an idea: Think up a theme for your event that makes it easy to include masks in a fun, playful way.  Perhaps something involving costumes? Create a “drive by” (walk-by) type event, where rather than… Read more

September 8, 2020

Full disclosure before we begin . . . I’ll be getting in line at my local polling place this November (I anticipate no problems, it’s a well-run precinct) to cast my three-for-the-price-of-one vote, if my critics are to be believed: One vote for a third-party candidate TBD, and therefore, I’m informed, that also means I’ll be casting one vote each for Trump and Biden.  Okay, that’s fine.  Let’s talk about why. This afternoon I commented to the SuperHusband that the… Read more

August 31, 2020

Today I was alarmed to find myself needing write this. So let me explain something, again, about Southern culture: We honor the dead. To my knowledge there is one, single, possibly-valid argument for maintaining Confederate memorials, and it is that regardless of their sins, it is good to remember our forebears and honor their virtues.  If you are an old-school Republican governor of one the reddest of the red-states, a state so certain to swing for Trump that MAGA hats just are… Read more

August 27, 2020

From the Archdiocese of Atlanta, emphasis mine: Archbishop Gregory J. Hartmayer, OFM Conv., encourages those who are healthy and are not burdened with the fear of being exposed to the virus  to begin returning to Mass and receive the grace of the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist. There are two ways to read this, and the more charitable reading is that the archbishop is graciously acknowledging the suffering of persons with phobias.  That’s super, I approve, and for more ideas about providing… Read more

August 26, 2020

The Institute for Family Studies is reporting that, after controlling for demographic variables, children from two-parent families where the mother works only part-time outside the home or not at all are most likely to attend a selective college. You can read the summary of the study here. Small hitch, unless the author of the study, Nicholas Zill, is being coy about his methodology: He controlled for family income, not per-parent income. The median family income among those families where both parents work full… Read more

August 22, 2020

“IVG” is in vitro gametogenesis, an emerging technology that allows the creation of babies (baby mice, at the moment) from the genetic material of one, two, three, or more parents.  You can have a baby genetically descended from a lone parent, a baby genetically descended from a half-dozen gene-donors . . . whatever suits.  It is the next-level in designer baby-making. [False cognate alert: “IVG” in French means interruption voluntaire de grossesse, aka avortement — abortion.  So take note in translating back and forth… Read more

August 13, 2020

Fr. Matthew Schneider did a great job covering the recent case of a priest who reacted poorly to a disruptive child during a private baptism.  Please read: “Video Shows the Need to Train Priests on Disability.” No, seriously.  You need to go read it.  Thank you. If you obeyed, then for a treat, here’s my small side comment to add to Fr. Matthew’s excellent post (which you read, right?): Quit using other people as your excuse for poor spiritual training…. Read more

August 12, 2020

Today’s Gospel is the instruction on what to do with erring members of the Church: If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have won over your brother. If he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, so that  every fact may be established on the testimony of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell the… Read more

August 8, 2020

This article over at Crux, “Vatican says baptisms done with plural pronouns are invalid” has all the makings of a depressing internet debate: We have an ancient practice handed down directly from the Lord, a group of people with presumably good motivations for proposing a slight variation from the prescribed words, and the Vatican giving that variation a big fat no-way-no-how. Boring direction #1: The Vatican is full of horrible old meanies, because what difference does it make if someone… Read more

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