In considering gay marriage, focus on family

March 5, 2008 • 33
Plenty of those who oppose gay marriage can only cite Scripture to justify their position. In a secular state, such arguments will not be persuasive in the long term. But many proponents of gay marriage present equally inadequate reasoning; they criticize the legislation of Scriptural morality instead of providing positive justification. Implicit is the false »

Religious right critiques hope, destroys world

February 29, 2008 • 17
The recent criticism of hate speech on campus is entirely appropriate. But we ought to make one exception to this rule: the “religious right,” a retrograde coterie of unattractive common folk who seek to impose their irrational beliefs on the rest of us. These fundamentalists lie awake at night, plotting the imposition of the truths »

An independent Kosovo could breed terrorism

February 20, 2008 • 16
The Zociste Monastery was situated about five miles outside of Orahovac, a town in western Kosovo. Its church was a treasure — dating to the 13th century, the interior featured medieval frescoes and beautiful wood carvings. Dedicated to eighth-century healers Cosmas and Damian, the church filled a special role in the spiritual life of those »

Religious faith is the culmination of Reason

February 6, 2008 • 23
Our public atheists (Dawkins, Harris, Hitchens, et al.) are correct to point out the difficulty in using syllogisms to prove the existence of God. But they misconstrue the nature of reason when they then assert the irrationality of theism. The mistake is not theirs alone. At least since the enlightenment, the public conception of reason »

Romney transcends McCain’s perfect mold

January 29, 2008 • 2
In the increasingly likely scenario that Rudy Giuliani does not win today’s Republican primary in Florida, only two remaining candidates will have a shot at the Republican nomination prior to the Republican convention: John McCain and Mitt Romney. But it won’t be the first time that the two have competed. In the last weeks of »

Questions of character necessarily sway votes

January 24, 2008 • 0
It is often said that American voters are “irrational.” But what exactly does the suggestion of “irrationality” mean, and to what extent does it pose a problem for those analyzing politics? There are two kinds of “irrationality” in voting behavior. The first is when a voter votes contrary to his tangible interest, expressed in economic, »

Principled conservatism difficult in America

December 5, 2007 • 1
“Stover at Yale,” a serialized novel about Yale life at the turn of the 20th century, opens with a depiction of Dink Stover as one of the “chosen” in his class. A football star in prep school, he is well-known upon arrival and immediately begins to climb the social ladder that will lead to a »

Fades from blue

November 16, 2007 • 1
All quiet, the forest around Yale Bowl Tremors, pregnant with meaning, the message Fathomed by he who hearkens to silence. For in silence sound is no mere chatter But rather birth, advent, revelation. With the bespecked rays of dawn, awake Autumnal lark, take flight, and sing of man Immortal, of worthy blood the image. The »

David Brooks and coffee shops inspire bobo nostalgia

October 31, 2007 • 0
I sat in a chair, reading the books of David Brooks and sipping a pumpkin-spice latte, enjoying the warmth in the store and in my stomach on a chilly afternoon. Just a few minutes earlier, when I entered the Yale Bookstore, I faced a stark choice. Half a flight of stairs down or half a »

Starbucks opens dialogue, closes social divide

October 17, 2007 • 0
If culture demands a common worship, and common worship requires the institutional support of ritual, every upper-middle-class American ought to visit the original Starbucks at least once in his lifetime. Call it a pilgrimage. After parking many blocks away and walking toward the bustling Pike Place Market in Seattle, Wash., I finally spotted the sacred »

Contraceptive culture fosters irresponsibility

October 3, 2007 • 0
The Supreme Court based its landmark decision, Roe v. Wade, on a right to privacy, thus intending no judgment of the act itself. In other words, abortion could be perfectly wrong, yet remain a medical decision beyond the legitimate sphere of governmental proscription. Justice Blackmun, who had spent more than one year writing the decision, »

True conservatism can solve humanities issue

September 19, 2007 • 0
Jim Sleeper was right to point out yesterday that American consumerism has done much more to cause the decline of the humanities than the infection of Marxists in English departments. But he was wrong to identify consumerism with conservatism. Consumerism is American, but it certainly is not conservative. It has become popular for members and »