Finding My Inner Gun Owner

I am getting in touch with my inner gun owner, that primal part of my reptilian brain that says “I must weaponize.” Blame it on the Obama administration, I say. The president’s proposals of firearm abatement got me thinking: If I don’t get to a gun store soon, there won’t be anything left for me. So I joined the big rush and visited three gun stores last week but, dang, they were each nearly empty. I was too late. The gun nuts beat me to the cache… . Continue Reading »

Debating Roe’s Legacy: Response to Daniel Williams

In response to recent claims (including my own in First Things) that Roe aided pro-lifers in unexpected ways, Daniel Williams argues that such views are mistaken. The decision, according to Williams, neither hurt pro-choice momentum nor breathed new life into a fledgling right-to-life movement. Instead, it cut off public discussion over competing constitutional claims regarding the rights of women and unborn human organisms. In other words, Roe has no pro-life legacy… . Continue Reading »

The Marriage Debate III: The Nature of Things

Cardinal Francis George of Chicago is, arguably, the most intellectually accomplished bishop in the history of the American episcopate. Earlier this year, when the Illinois legislature began to consider changing state law to “accommodate those of the same sex who wish to ‘marry’ one another” (as the cardinal put it), Professor George gave the readers of his column in the Chicago archdiocesan newspaper a lesson in metaphysics”and, I suspect, a high-voltage intellectual jolt … Continue Reading »

How Do We Respond to ‘So What?’

Flannery O’ Connor told a friend, “I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say,” and it is the same for me. Last week saw me bed-bound, dealing with a bug that left me more addle-brained than usual, and in perusing my phone and tablet, I kept coming across the most interesting stories to ponder on my bed. Unable to sit up and write, though, I could not know what I thought… . Continue Reading »

Is the Constitution Conservative?

A century ago progressive politicians openly expressed antipathy for the U.S. Constitution. Bicameralism, judicial review, and politics stood in the way of nonpartisan, scientific administration. Sure, the progressive argument went, bad laws might be deterred by the need for agreement among separated institutions, but just as many good laws might be deterred as well… . Continue Reading »

Freedom from Religion

“In Buddhism no creator,” says the Dalai Lama during a public conversation with Archbishop Desmond Tutu recounted in The Wisdom of Compassion: Stories of Remarkable Encounters and Timeless Insights by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Victor Chan, recently abridged and published by the Huffington Post. It typifies the contributions the spiritual leader of Tibet makes, all of which raise questions. Continue Reading »

A Perfect God

Yoram Hazony, author of The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture, recently wrote a provocative opinion article for the New York Times in which he summarized his skepticism toward the idea of a perfect God. Hazony suggests that there are two compelling reasons why the God of classical theism should be rejected … Continue Reading »

Environmentalism’s Deep Misanthropy

David Attenborough”famous for hosting BBC’s The Living Planet and other nature documentaries”has recently drawn headlines for lambasting humans as a “plague on the Earth.” That someone of Attenborough’s stature (he has been knighted, among other official honors, and is so popular in the U.K. that he was named one the One-Hundred Greatest Britons in a 2002 BBC poll) would compare us to cholera evidences how mainstream anti-humanism has become within the environmental movement… . Continue Reading »

Better Than They Knew: A Response to Patrick Deneen

Patrick Deneen is right to have raised questions over several years about whether American liberal democracy is sustainable. He’s not, of course, the first to do so. Conservatives, maybe beginning with Edmund Burke, have often understood liberalism as a kind of self-obsessive individualism that has the potential to consume the social and relational institutions that make human life worth living. Liberalism contains the seeds of its own destruction… . Continue Reading »