Cease-fires are cheap these days and by their nature they’ve always been a tenuous thing. Ban Ki-moon, U.N. Secretary General, is repeating calls for a respected cease-fire in Gaza. After the shoot-down of MH17, cease-fire conditions in eastern Ukraine remain tenuous. Last week’s cease-fire in the Central African Republic has broken down, as terrible violence between the area's Christians and Muslims resumes. It’s a brutal litany, begging the question of what exactly a Christian is to think… [more]
Last week “Weird Al” Yankovic commandeered the interwebs and tickled many a funny bone with the release of the full-length album Mandatory Fun. Although he has no plans to retire, the changing music landscape points toward a future of singles and YouTube posts. The title of the album may even… [more]
On Monday, President Barack Obama signed an executive order amending a 1965 mandate that prohibited discrimination in the hiring of federal employees based on their “race, color, religion, sex or national origin.” Obama’s new order now includes “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” as federally protected categories as well. During a… [more]
The relationship between Christianity and capitalism is a perennial topic, one taken up recently by the New York Times’ Room for Debate feature. It’s important to distinguish between different economic forms, and labels like capitalism can sometimes obscure rather than clarify points of dispute. As the contributors to the Times’… [more]
I’m not a fan of horror films. It is difficult for me to enter storylines that deny the sanctity of life and capitalize on the mass appeal of gratuitous violence. But I was sucked in by the provocative plot of The Purge. Though its ratings weren’t stellar, this low-budget, 2013… [more]
This Tuesday, Glenn Beck is live-streaming a national anti-Common Core event called “We Will Not Conform.” Opposing the Common Core State Standards has been Beck’s bread and butter of late. In May, he released the book Conform: Exposing the Truth about Common Core and Public Education, which currently holds top… [more]
In the excellent documentary It Might Get Loud, Jack White talks about how he intentionally struggles with music. He often chooses crummy old instruments so that he has to work hard to make music with them. If he has time to go three steps to get from the piano to… [more]
With the release of his musical romantic drama Begin Again, Irish filmmaker John Carney, whose previous film was the low-budget Once, answers the question, “What could this guy have done with some real money?” More importantly, however, he hints at a much better question. What is it about music that… [more]
When news of “The Letter” broke, I was listening to Colin Cowherd’s show on ESPN radio. LeBron James’ declaration that he would return home to play for the Cleveland Cavaliers was not only brilliantly handled, I thought, but also authentic. With a little distance from the celebrated letter, though, I… [more]
A recent Time article highlighted the legal issues faced by companies such as Airbnb, Uber and Lyft. These companies are part of the sharing economy, which uses technology to connect consumer demand with goods and services provided by individuals rather than traditional businesses. In my hometown of Grand Rapids, Mich.,… [more]
Two recent news stories – about the “right to be forgotten” by Google and Facebook’s surreptitious newsfeed study - have me thinking about what technology enables us to know about each other. In May, the European Union affirmed a “right to be forgotten,” under which people are asking for news… [more]
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Bob Keeley 1: This emphasis on standards misses the point. The biggest single factor in school achievement is poverty.
John Joseph Thompson: Life is not supposed to be a struggle, but as long as we're still on this side of the divide it is all about struggle, so I think Jack is right when he says music should be too.
Nathanael Snow: Special grace is required when hospitality needs to be shared with enemies or those who have little or nothing to offer in return.
Jem: It's rather demeaning to believe that a piece of celluloid could potentially be the seminal factor in separating one from God.
Branson Parler 1: I think it's worth distinguishing between sports whose primary aim is to injure another person (such as MMA or boxing) versus those whose primary aim is something other than personal injury (such as football, hockey, etc.)
Ellen Painter Dollar 1: To practice a genital determinism, in which one's sexual equipment is the beginning and end of the identity story, without considering psychology and emotion and all of that is, I think, giving the body too much sway.