Commmonweal and First Things

Commonweal magazine has posted an item on its blog, replying to my item replying to their items ( here and here ), replying to Charlotte Allen’s item , replying to the last issue of the print version of Commonweal ¯and anyone who can follow all that is smarter than your average bear. I . . . . Continue Reading »

Heather Mac Donald and atheism

Heather Mac Donald opens up one of the most important arguments necessary for this nation to face soon, that is, What is the relation of atheism to Jewish-Christian belief? Her immediate wish is that there were more respect for atheists within the Republican party, or at least a diminishment of her . . . . Continue Reading »

Pope Benedict XVI and war

On August 1, I criticized Pope Benedict XVI’s call for a ceasefire in the conflict between Israel and Hezbollah in Lebanon. Since then, he has granted an interview to some German journalists in anticipation of his upcoming trip to Bavaria. Asked about the fighting in the Middle East, he said . . . . Continue Reading »

England and foxhunting bans

I’m sure that many Americans were, and remain, somewhat bemused at the passions aroused in England over the subject of foxhunting . Those passions raged in the months and years leading to the ban, culminating in an enormous pro-hunt demonstration in London . The passions remain, embedded in . . . . Continue Reading »

Jane Austen and Park Honan

I don’t have the computer skills, let alone the patience, to set up my own blogsite. So I am especially grateful to the editors of First Things for their ecumenical hospitality in opening their cyber-pages to voices other than their own during this month of August. In my first foray into this . . . . Continue Reading »

Gene McCarthy and Robert F. Kennedy

In about March or April of 1968 (is it really so many years ago?), I received a call in my Stanford office asking me whether I could meet with Robert F. Kennedy in San Francisco on his first trip to the Commonwealth as a presidential candidate. I said yes, for Bobby was already my favorite among . . . . Continue Reading »

Response to Robert George on “Bodies”

I differ with Robert George (and perhaps Patrick Lee) on some foundational issues in meta-ethics, and that is why, I think, they and I disagree in some respects about the dignity of, and respect due to, human bodies, whether dead or alive. Since my view is for some people the less familiar, I ought . . . . Continue Reading »

P.D.Q. Bach, Peter Schickele

And now for something completely different . . . If good music is a passion, then you probably already steer clear of this guy . However, if the deflating of stuffed shirts, aka top quality nonsense, is a penchant, then you no doubt are a fan of P.D.Q. Bach, also known as Peter Schickele. Here in . . . . Continue Reading »

Statue of Saint Therese

I was very glad to see this little page on the Notre Dame website . My friend Charley and I put up this statue of Saint Therese in the spring of 1948, and I am thrilled to see devotion before it still picking up. Charley Cingolani was a high school sophomore, and I a freshman, at the time. The . . . . Continue Reading »

Physics and “Bodies: The Exhibition”

I am not competent to get involved in the theological and philosophical discussions among Robert P. George, Patrick Lee , Robert T. Miller , and Claire V. McCusker on the relation between bodies and souls. However, as a physicist I am interested in one statement made here yesterday by Robert George . . . . Continue Reading »