Something Greater Than Yourself

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When my husband and I picked up our son”let’s call him Buster”from the train station this past weekend, he threw his gear into the car and proclaimed a state of near-starvation. We invited him to put off eating and join us at an Eagle Scout Court of Honor for a young man named Danny… . Continue Reading »

The Hate That Feels Like Love

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“Hatred,” says psychologist Robert Enright, “has a long shelf life. Once it enters into the human heart, it’s hard to get it out. It breeds destruction, discouragement, and hopelessness.” Enright hails from the University of Wisconsin, in the so-called “liberal enclave” of Madison, where ongoing demonstrations by members of public employee unions against the elected governor have put some vivid moments of hatred on view. … Continue Reading »

What Flannery Said!

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Father Augustin Escobar, associate pastor at St. Norbert’s Church in Orange, California, invited a Presbyterian minister to concelebrate Mass, partake of the Holy Eucharist, and distribute the sacrament to the faithful. Bishop Tod Brown of the Diocese of Orange, California put Father Escobar on leave while an investigation ensues… . Continue Reading »

Weakness is Sown; Strength Rises Up

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The drama of Egypt’s revolution and the ongoing story of that nation’s transition to”it is hoped”a fair and democratic society, has rightly sucked out the oxygen that might have sustained a few other stories worthy of note. One such story broke last Tuesday in Indonesia, where an estimated 1500 Muslims … Continue Reading »

The Eclipsing Vagueness of Egypt

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As Egypt continues to transition from an ill-defined quasi-secular diplomatically-skilled dictatorship into an ill-imagined-no-one-yet-knows-what, following the story is like trying to watch a film or read a book through a yard of waxed paper; nothing is clear. On January 25, as the Egyptian people took to the streets over food supplies, the American president and the world’s diplomatic community seemed … Continue Reading »

Gosnell Headlines? Gone, Baby, Gone!

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The story of Kermit Gosnell, the Philadelphia abortionist who ran what a Grand Jury report referred to as “a baby charnel house,” where viable babies”“big enough to walk around with me or walk me to the bus,” as Gosnell joked”were delivered and then outright killed with a “snip” to the spinal cord, their feet sometimes severed for souvenirs … Continue Reading »

Uncredentialed Wonder

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He has authored over a dozen books, written a syndicated newspaper column and countless essays and articles covering a broad range of subjects—sports, politics, mobsters, union thugs, cultural touchstones, booze, and blades of grassu2014all of it written in a smart, literate voice of the casual sophisticate who takes his subject, but not himself, seriously. And in the summer of 2010 … Continue Reading »

An Idol Season

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It’s that time of year, when celebrities and artists engage in self-promotional campaigning and play dress-up in hopes of snaring a nomination for a critic’s award or a guild award or an “arts and sciences” trophy celebrating their excellence, and the rest of us watch them do it. We watch them for the fashions and for the foibles … Continue Reading »

The Year of Living Anxiously

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Phyllis Scheck, age 79; Dorthy Morris, age 76; Dorwin Stoddard, age 76; Judge John Roll, age 63; Gabriel Zimmerman, age 30; Christina Green, age 9. As you read this, those six human beings“mostly anonymous to the world but beloved of their families and friends“are being grieved, waked, remembered, mourned, celebrated and interred. They were murdered at a shopping center, on January 8 by an incoherent, mentally ill young man who was somehow able to get hands on a gun. … Continue Reading »

Surrender Unto Surrender

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Since the recent, horrifying reports of Coptic Catholics being slaughtered at worship in Iraq and Egypt each day’s email has brought at least one, and sometimes several, angry and emotional missives”diatribes which generally begin by ruing the day that the post-9/11 George W. Bush declared, “Islam means peace.” … Continue Reading »