Buffalo massacre shows how widespread and dangerous white Christian nationalist conspiracy theories are becoming

Two articles by scholars published in the wake of the mass murder at the Tops Friendly Markets store in Buffalo struck me like Thomas Jefferson's fire bell in the night. The scholars are Samuel Perry, of the University of Oklahoma, and Philip Gorski, of Yale; they have written extensively about white Christian nationalism -- the … Continue reading Buffalo massacre shows how widespread and dangerous white Christian nationalist conspiracy theories are becoming

‘Unraveling of America’: Viral article in Rolling Stone on COVID, individualism and the inevitable decline of empires

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJJTAz5ux-c I just want America to be the America of my dreams, growing up as a boy in Canada. And that was the America of Walt Whitman, Abraham Lincoln and the Grateful Dead. -- Wade Davis, interview, PBS, Aug. 17, 2020 This video of an interview with an Canadian anthropologist popped up, courtesy of a … Continue reading ‘Unraveling of America’: Viral article in Rolling Stone on COVID, individualism and the inevitable decline of empires

Episcopal survey research shows disconnect between gospel message and public perception of Christians

Something to file away for when we do the book study on Reclaiming the ''E'' Word: Waking Up to Our Evangelical Identity after Easter at Peace Lutheran -- A recent Ipsos survey commissioned by the Episcopal Church shows the "popularity of Jesus’ teachings and the ways Christians are often perceived as failing to live up … Continue reading Episcopal survey research shows disconnect between gospel message and public perception of Christians

A New Yorker profile of Justice Amy Coney Barrett raises difficult questions of church-state relations

For several months now, I've been wondering if the U.S. Supreme Court's First Amendment fundamentalism on the "free exercise" clause is going to lead them to weaken protections under the "establishment" clause. I blogged about it HERE, HERE and HERE, toward the end of the court's spring term when decisions with troubling implications for church-state … Continue reading A New Yorker profile of Justice Amy Coney Barrett raises difficult questions of church-state relations

George Will on ‘dyspeptic moments’ in history of 1790s, 1850s and today, ‘status resentments’ and culture wars

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1vofmvlyww8 A couple of incisive comments by conservative op ed columnist George Will, who's been making himself widely available for interviews on the publication of his new book (actually a collection of his Washington Post columns), titled American Happiness and Discontents: The Unruly Torrent, 2008-2020. Kirkus describes it as an "overstuffed collection of the conservative … Continue reading George Will on ‘dyspeptic moments’ in history of 1790s, 1850s and today, ‘status resentments’ and culture wars

Notes & quotes: Books on polarization, culture wars, tribalism; Trump a ‘gigantic … middle finger’ to cultural elites

d r a f t Carlos Lozada, "The united hates of America," Washington Post, Oct. 30, 2020 https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2020/10/30/polarization-books-trump-election/. Carlos Lozada is WaPo's nonfiction book review editor   [...] The growing polarization of the United States into a nation torn by partisan identities is one of the legacies of the Trump presidency, even if it began … Continue reading Notes & quotes: Books on polarization, culture wars, tribalism; Trump a ‘gigantic … middle finger’ to cultural elites

Notes & quotes: Obama’s remarks and backlash at 2015 National Prayer Breakfast, quip at Easter breakfast

d r a f t "Remarks by the President and the Vice President at Easter Prayer Breakfast," Office of the Press Secretary, White House, April 7, 2015 https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/the-press-office/2015/04/07/remarks-president-and-vice-president-easter-prayer-breakfast "[...] Isn’t that how Jesus lived?  Isn't that how He loved?  Embracing those who were different; serving the marginalized; humbling Himself to the last.  This is the … Continue reading Notes & quotes: Obama’s remarks and backlash at 2015 National Prayer Breakfast, quip at Easter breakfast

David Brooks on lack of mutual trust, sense of common purpose in America’s ‘pathetic herd immunity failure’ on Covid

d r a f t In May 2020 xxx lede  I was an American history major in college, back in the 1980s.I’ll be honest with you. I thrilled to the way the American story was told back then. To immigrate to America was to join the luckiest and greatest nation in history. “Nothing in all … Continue reading David Brooks on lack of mutual trust, sense of common purpose in America’s ‘pathetic herd immunity failure’ on Covid

A query that went nowhere: On David Brooks, the prophet Jeremiah, a French jurist, ‘creative minorities,’ cultural diversity, UNESCO and ‘reciprocal creolization’

Excerpts from a query: Sent Thu, Jul 22, 8:32 PM -- it doesn't matter who I sent it to, and I have no plans to fool around with a free-standing article, but Mireille Delmas-Marty's concept of "reciprocal creolization," a process of cultural blending that involves dialogue and mutual respect for differences, fits in so well with … Continue reading A query that went nowhere: On David Brooks, the prophet Jeremiah, a French jurist, ‘creative minorities,’ cultural diversity, UNESCO and ‘reciprocal creolization’

Robert Jones of PRRI on white Christian grief, anger; need for a ‘new story about who America is and where we’re going as a country that is sort of faithful to its past’

d r a f t https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QURLbHWOjSU An author’s eulogy for ‘White Christian America’ | PBS NewsHour | Aug. 31, 2016 Blurb by PBS NewsHour: The demographic makeup of America is undergoing a visible change, and with it, America’s culture -- dominated by White Christian culture -- and power structures are shifting, too. That’s the premise … Continue reading Robert Jones of PRRI on white Christian grief, anger; need for a ‘new story about who America is and where we’re going as a country that is sort of faithful to its past’