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Failed Leaders

Suicides among Americans aged ten to twenty-four increased by more than 50 percent between 2007 and 2017. The suicide rate for all ages rose by nearly 30 percent between 1999 and 2016. This is not an isolated trend. Life expectancy in the United States is falling, a shocking trend for a rich . . . . Continue Reading »

The Virtue of Prudence

In The Four Cardinal Virtues, Josef Pieper writes, “That is prudent which is in keeping with reality.” Moral principles and good intentions amount to little if pursued blindly. Action on behalf of the good requires accurate perception of concrete ­situations and circumstances. Drawing upon . . . . Continue Reading »

Back Row America

I first walked into the Hunts Point neighborhood of the Bronx because I had been told not to. I had been told it was too dangerous and too poor, and that I was too white. I had been told that “nobody goes there for anything but drugs and prostitutes.” The people telling me this were my . . . . Continue Reading »

Faith Amid Corruption

The Catholic Church in the West is full of corruption—financial, sexual, and spiritual. We are forced to face this hard reality, not the least because the weak pontificate of Pope Francis offers so little of substance. The corruption that afflicts us does not arise from overpowering lusts. Our . . . . Continue Reading »

The Civility Trap

Lots of folks are calling for civility these days, an understandable response to a shrill and polarized political climate. In his First Inaugural Address, as the Civil War loomed, Abraham Lincoln spoke of “the better angels of our nature.” He wanted to smooth the way for reconciliation. . . . . Continue Reading »

T. S. Eliot, Populist

What defines the essence of populism? What is it for, and what is it against? T. S. Eliot had some insights into this question nearly one hundred years ago. In Notes Towards the Definition of Culture, Eliot drew a fruitful distinction between the upper class and the elite. Class . . . . Continue Reading »

Letters

Geoffrey Hill Like Garrick Davis (“Geoffrey Hill, Prodigal,” August/September), I too had the fortune of having Geoffrey Hill as an instructor. In 2004, I was a student in the Boston University writing seminars, and a few of us from the writing program took Hill’s Gerard Manley Hopkins seminar . . . . Continue Reading »

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