R.R. Reno is editor of First Things.

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Divorce Breeds Divorce

From First Thoughts

OK, surely this is a man bites dog story. A new study shows that if a close friend gets divorced, then you’re more likely to get divorced . Gee, who would have imagined that we’re influence by other people’s behavior. We’re, er, social animals? Long ago Aristotle recognized that . . . . Continue Reading »

Boorish Behavior

From First Thoughts

Politics evoke passions, and cultural politics passionate passions. That shouldn’t surprise us. After all, unlike tax policy, questions about abortion, marriage, raising children, the role of religion in public life, and so forth touch on our deepest beliefs. Which makes this story of boorish . . . . Continue Reading »

Islam in the German Universities

From First Thoughts

Paul Hockenos has a fine article in The Chronicle of Higher Education detailing plans by the German government to establish institutes for the study of Islamic theology. In Germany, the universites have faculties of Protestant and Catholic theology responsible not only for academic study but also . . . . Continue Reading »

College Admissions and Race

From First Thoughts

Yesterday, Ross Douthat has a thoughtful column that brings forward data that confirms what everybody knows. In the race for admissions to fancy private colleges and universities it doesn’t help to be a white and relatively poor Jane or Joe “For minority applicants,” Douthat writes, . . . . Continue Reading »

After the Scandals

From Web Exclusives

Last year, the Irish government published the Murphy Report detailing sexual abuse cases among the clergy, and more damningly, cover-ups by the bishops. Then there was the dustup over a cleric from Pope Benedict’s old diocese in Germany, who was reassigned while in sexual rehab. Now we see very sad and ugly revelations about a Belgian bishop, along with the usual history of negligent oversight … Continue Reading »

The Conspiracy of Silence on Islamic Riots

From First Thoughts

Am I the only one who reads stories from Europe and scratch my head over the conspiracy of silence? Consider this little news item about riots in the French city of Genoble . It seems the BBC, Reuters, and others can’t bring themselves to mention that the fleeing suspect shot by the police was . . . . Continue Reading »

Hammering on Rome

From First Thoughts

Wow. The New York Times can’t stop itself. In an editorial on Saturday , the Grey Lady deemed last weeks changes to the motu proprio concerning crimes against the holy sacraments worse than inadequate. “Among all the defensive posturing and inept statements,” write the editors, there . . . . Continue Reading »

Never Change — Until We Change

From First Thoughts

As Meghan noted earlier this week, it seems that the YMCA will be dropping the MCA from their name. Men? That became politically incorrect ages ago. Christian? Hardly a factor in their programming for decades. Association? No problem there, but YA doesn’t make any sense. I’m fine with . . . . Continue Reading »

New Norms From Rome

From First Thoughts

The Vatican has put forward new norms for handling clerical sexual abuse. The spin in the AP story in the New York Times offers occasion for reflection. Thought #1: The story says, “The bulk of the new document merely codified the ad hoc norms for dealing canonically with pedophile . . . . Continue Reading »