July 24, 2021

The Jerusalem Post has what I think is a helpful discussion of why two different studies of the Pfizer vaccine’s effectiveness show radically different results. Between this and the acknowledged reality of vaccine-breakthrough infections and post-COVID reinfections, I think what we need to recognize is that humans don’t, at this time, have the technology to eradicate COVID-19.  What we have is the technology to radically reduce (not eliminate) the vulnerability of high-risk persons from a virus that is likely to remain… Read more

July 23, 2021

The Pillar reports this afternoon: . . . after a review of commercially available app signal data showed patterns of location-based hookup app use at more than 10 archdiocesan rectories and clerical residences during 2018, 2019, and 2020. There are 212 parishes in the Newark archdiocese. Assuming that “more than ten” is less than fifteen, that means between 4.7% and 7% of parishes in the diocese were affected.  Let’s round conservatively to approximately 5%, and we can console the extremely aggravated… Read more

July 23, 2021

Since it’s that time of week, seven things to make you glad you don’t live inside my head all the time: #1 I will almost certainly watch a little bit of Olympics this year, but honestly I’ve lost my taste for them.  Reasons: The regional chokeholds on broadcast coverage.  I can’t watch the sports I want to watch, nor the commentary (or silence) I want to watch, because heaven forbid the television monopolies discover that half a dozen geeks worldwide… Read more

July 22, 2021

Oh heck, why not talk about vaccines, too, while I’m at it? Ed Yong at The Atlantic has a good interview up this morning on the reality that unvaccinated folk are not a monolith of science-deniers but a complex group of people with serious questions and obstacles to getting vaccinated. (You can get the summary on Twitter at the first link if you can’t get past the paywall at the magazine.) I can vouch for the barriers-to-access.  When I went to… Read more

July 21, 2021

FTR I had no idea, when I let loose a couple pertinent rants over the past few days, that The Pillar would be breaking such a major story yesterday, right on topic.  Quick comments rather than an essay:   #1 Darwin Catholic (who also writes for The Pillar) states perfectly my own shock at the knee-jerk response, by some, to the investigative reporting that went into the story: “We Must Not Be A Church of Lies”. #2 For my own part, I’m appalled… Read more

July 19, 2021

One of my teens is determined to make a Taylor Swift fan out of me, and some time ago she introduced me to “Bad Blood”, lyrics here. I couldn’t deny the effectiveness of the artistry, but I was struggling to relate: The reality is that I just don’t have many bad relationships in my life, and even those few are merely tragic, not hateful.  I’m surrounded by pretty good people.  It’s nice.   I was listening to the song with my… Read more

July 17, 2021

Just read The Pillar’s summary of the new Motu Proprio radically restricting the use of the “Extraordinary Form” aka “the Traditional Latin Mass”. Personal reaction: Lord have mercy. I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve attended a TLM, and still have fingers left to use in the future (and I hope to do so).  I sometimes attend a Latin-language Novus Ordo; I often attend, by choice, a very high-church, liturgically solemn classical choral Mass; the other top-choice Mass… Read more

June 16, 2021

Let me start by saying: My personal, non-medical, non-expert (but Old Married People do know a thing or two) opinion is that “conversion therapy” is a lousy idea.  I think this because I think human sex drives are pretty deeply embedded in the brain. I think, therefore, that even when we don’t like some aspect of our sexual inclinations, and even when for very good reasons we determine we must not act on our internally-driven desires, it is healthier and more realistic… Read more

June 5, 2021

Just browsed a puff-piece at The Atlantic about the history of gender-neutral singular pronouns in English, and I was wondering what brought that on, then remembered ’tis the season. You would think that since I went to a Pride Festival* today, I would not have  forgotten quite so quickly what month it was.  But I had.  Probably because the local festival just had people at it.  Not overly memorable, since most of the places I go have people. So, anyway, having been… Read more

June 3, 2021

I want to speak briefly to the problem of the horrible people you go to church with (or don’t, because they are horrible).  A lot of times when we talk about “mercy” what we really mean is “things aren’t that bad” or even “actually that’s just fine.” It’s super easy for a modern, affluent, suburban, pretty-cleaning-livin’ Catholic to get to the part where Jesus dines with prostitutes and be like, “Oh yeah. I’m broad-minded and loving and welcoming like Jesus… Read more

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