July 29, 2020

I came across this wonderful podcast hosted by Bret Weinstein, a biologist and evolutionary theorist who gained notoriety during the 2017 crisis at Evergreen State University.  In this podcast, Dr. Weinstein leads a discussion with an impressive collection of Black public intellectuals, some of whom I have admired for years and some of whom I had never heard of but whose works I look forward to exploring in the future.  If you are like me, you will likely find yourself… Read more

July 23, 2020

Catholics are no strangers to the desecration and destruction of their houses of worship, though it has dramatically dissipated since the heyday of the Ku Klux Klan decades ago.  Sadly, within recent weeks, Catholic Churches have become targets of vandals.  As Francis X. Rocca reports in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal:  Parishioners and clergy were shocked and grieving following a spate of vandalism at Catholic churches in various U.S. cities in recent weeks. Catholic institutions from Boston to Florida reported more… Read more

July 19, 2020

Baylor University, the institution that has employed me since 2003 and at which I am honored to serve, is a Christian university.  According to its website,  Baylor was “chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas and affiliated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas.”  It “is both the state’s oldest institution of higher learning and the world’s largest Baptist university.”   Although a vast majority of our students identify as Christians, with Baptists being the largest denomination represented, some of our… Read more

July 18, 2020

(HT: Called to Communion) On Marcus Grodi’s radio program, Deep in Scripture, Dr. David Anders offers a biblical and historical account of the theology of relics and the intercession of the saints. Listen here at Called to Communion. Read more

July 17, 2020

In a previous post, I opined a bit about cancel culture.  However, I highly recommend the Twitter thread posted yesterday by Oxford Politics Professor, Teresa M. Bejan. She makes the case, in line with John Stuart Mill, that social constraints on speech and expression are often more deleterious to free thought and inquiry than legal constraints. Even if you find yourself disagreeing with Professor Bejan, you’ll be better off having read it.  Here is how it begins: 1/ It’s also worth… Read more

July 13, 2020

There’s been a lot of talk recently about “cancel culture” and it’s deleterious effect upon our freedom of speech. On July 7 Harper’s published an open letter signed by over 150 noted writers and public intellectuals that claimed that “the free exchange of information and ideas, the lifeblood of a liberal society, is daily becoming more constricted.” Rebuttals ensued, including one noted by the New York Times, which included its own list of signatories. What exactly is cancel culture?  It depends who… Read more

July 9, 2020

I grew up on this kind of music.  Seems like we need it now more than ever. (Lyrics below).  By the way, for those who don’t know about Laura Nyro, you can read about her here.  One of the great talents to come out of the burgeoning singer/songwriter movement of the 1960s, she died much too young. Come on, people, come on, children Come on down to the glory river Gonna wash you up and wash you down Gonna lay… Read more

July 9, 2020

Nearly twelve years ago I had the honor to contribute two entries to the Encyclopedia of the First Amendment, published by Congressional Quarterly Press and edited by  John Vile, David Schultz, and David Hudson.  (My two entries were on the U.S. Supreme Court cases Carey v. Population Services International (1977) and Meek v. Pittinger (1975)) This morning I discovered that the entire encyclopedia is now accessible on the website of Middle Tennessee State University.  You can access the encyclopedia here.  Given… Read more

October 6, 2015

My graduate assistant, Hilary Yancey, and her husband, Preston, need our generosity. They are proud parents of Jackson, born on September 28th with a craniofacial microsomia.  Little Jackson requires a series of expensive surgeries. Please consider donating at gofundme.com.  Hilary arrived at Baylor in Fall 2014 as a PhD student in philosophy. She has served as my graduate assistant twice, both for Introduction to Medical Ethics.   Preston and Hilary tell their story, and explain Jackson’s condition, more eloquently than I… Read more

August 24, 2015

My friend, David Boonin, a philosopher at the University of Colorado (where he also serves as the department chair), has recently put together a philosophically serious blog, What’s Wrong?. Self-identified as “the not quite official blog of cu-boulder’s center for values and social policy,” it includes on its advisory board not only your truly but also Elizabeth Brake (Arizona State), John Corvino (Wayne State), Robert George (Princeton), Dale Jamieson (NYU), Christopher Kaczor (Loyola Marymount), Jan Narveson (Waterloo), Nancy Sherman (Georgetown), and Bonnie Steinbock (SUNY Albany). Although David and I sometimes find ourselves on opposite sides on a… Read more

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