February 7, 2019

The cases of Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and a yearbook photo in blackface and Justice Brett Kavanaugh and allegations of school-years sexual assault raise two ethical questions: moral responsibility for an action at the time it occurred; and moral responsibility in the present time for actions of the past. Read more

February 6, 2019

By David Mislin, Temple University Officials in six states, including populous ones such as Virginia and Florida, are considering bills permitting the study of the Bible in classrooms. Proponents of these bills insist that the Bible would be treated as a historical and literary source, not as a means of religious guidance. Last week, President Trump tweeted his support for these laws, writing, “Numerous states introducing Bible Literacy classes. … Starting to make a turn back? Great!” As a historian… Read more

February 1, 2019

By Walter E. Fluker, Boston University Director Martin Doblmeier’s new documentary, “Backs Against the Wall: The Howard Thurman Story,” is scheduled for release on public television in February. Thurman played an important role in the civil rights struggle as a key mentor to many leaders of the movement, including Martin Luther King Jr., among others. I have been a scholar of Howard Thurman and Martin Luther King Jr. for over 30 years and I serve as the editor of Thurman’s… Read more

January 29, 2019

Islamophobia often targets visible signs of Muslimness, such as modest clothing like headscarves, as well as prayer rituals and mosques. This time it is the prayer rug. President Trump’s fearmongering tweets bear an uncanny resemblance to a 2018 action film, “Sicario: Day of the Soldado.” Read more

January 25, 2019

When it comes to understanding the horrors of the Holocaust – one of the key aims of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, January 27 – most millennials are woefully lacking in knowledge. In a 2018 study, 4 in 10 millennials, our future teachers, believe that substantially fewer Jewish people were murdered during the Holocaust than the accepted 6 million figure. Read more

January 10, 2019

It’s a common refrain: How can your party be so heartless? You Republicans separating babies from refugee families? You Democrats sanctioning abortion? In my research, some people show more compassion than others, but Democratic and Republican Party voters are similar, on average. And then there are Trump voters. Read more

January 8, 2019

The new Congress includes its first two Muslim women members. One of them, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, considered getting sworn in privately using a copy of the Qur’an from the library of one of America’s Founding Fathers. Muslims arrived in North America as early as the 17th century, eventually composing 15 to 30 percent of the enslaved West African population of British America. Read more

January 1, 2019

As the old year comes to a close, The Complete Pilgrim commemorates some of the historic religious sites lost around the world in 2018.  Overall, 2018 was a worse year than its predecessor for destruction of religious shrines, though losses caused by war, terrorism, sectarian violence and vandalism appear to have decreased.  Unfortunately, destruction due to fires and deliberate demolitions was up significantly. Read more

December 27, 2018

In 40 years since the collective murder-suicide at Jonestown, most stories and scholarship have focused on Peoples Temple leader Jim Jones and the dangers of cults, missing the larger story of the Temple—a significant social movement that mobilized thousands of activists to change the world in ways small and large, from offering legal services to people the poor to campaigning against apartheid. Read more

December 22, 2018

Who was “Dr.” Seuss, how did he come to be writing and illustrating children’s books, and what was he trying to get across in his strange little tale about the people of Whoville and their delightfully diabolical nemesis, the Grinch? Read more

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