R.R. Reno is editor of First Things.

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Nelson Caves on Abortion Funding

From First Thoughts

I had hoped that my senator, Ben Nelson from Nebraska, would stand up for the sanctity of life.  His vote turned out to be decisive for moving the health care legislation forward in the Senate, and it looked as though he would hold out for something like the Stupak amendment to the Senate . . . . Continue Reading »

Re: When Heroes Wore Khakis

From First Thoughts

Whoa, wait a minute Joe . I think there’s a lot more going on in the Dockers ad that marketers trying to bring back trouser creases. I read this ad as a body blow to Baby-Boomer culture—casual Fridays, sloppily dressed professionals, sixty-year olds with sagging guts in blue jeans. And . . . . Continue Reading »

Stephen Toulmin, 1922-2009

From First Thoughts

Stephen Toulmin died earlier this month . He was a leader of the generation that come of age after World War II and made its way out of the wilderness of logical positivism. An enemy of arid rationalism and the foolish belief in the omni-competence of science, his work did a great deal to revive in . . . . Continue Reading »

A Parody of Modern Subjectivism

From First Thoughts

In the latest issue of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars Quarterly , Father Thomas Weinandy, O.F.M. dissects a feeble effusion of what passes for theological progressivism these days from the pen of Terrance Tilley. Tilley is a professor of theology at Fordham and an old warhorse of the American . . . . Continue Reading »

America in Bronze

From Web Exclusives

Augustus Saint-Gaudens was the Walt Whitman of American sculpture. Born in Dublin in 1848 to a French father and Irish mother and soon brought to the New York as an infant, Saint-Gaudens embodied the emerging fresh vitality of a country then entering a period of explosive industrial growth. Too young to serve in the Civil War, Saint-Gaudens came of age in the warm glow of Union victory and the ascendant sense that America was a nation destined to serve the noble purposes of humanity… . Continue Reading »

A 2009 Ranking of Graduate Programs in Theology

From Web Exclusives

A few years ago, I made a crude and impressionistic ranking of graduate programs in theology in North America. Recently, I mused in a more general way about what makes for a really good program in theology, and, in response, a couple of friends asked me if my old opinions still hold true. It’s a good question, and one I’ll try to answer… . Continue Reading »

The Agony of Mainline Protestantism

From Web Exclusives

This summer the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) held their biennial Churchwide Assembly. As is so often the case with American Christianity, the headline grabbing issue was sex. The Assembly didn’t exactly affirm or endorse homosexuality, but, after agreeing to disagree about the moral significance of homosexual relationships, it opened up the possibility for same-sex blessings and homosexual clergy… . Continue Reading »

Marriage, Morality, and Culture

From Web Exclusives

The tide is going out. Words like fornication have a musty, antiquated ring. Unwed mothers no longer suffer social stigma. Divorce has become common. The large, complicated human reality of sexual desire, mating, romance, and childrearing no longer finds itself ruled by elaborate and widely accepted social norms. And now, of course, we are in the midst of a drive toward same-sex marriage… . Continue Reading »