First Things

The Right to Have Parents

Please check out this article, at First Things, entitled “The Kids Are Not All Right.” The gist is that a movie has been made depicting the outcome when the children of lesbian couples who conceived by artificial insemination from an anonymous donor encounter their no-longer anonymous dads. Two things in this situation are clear: 1. … Read more

Reverend Kevin Gray and Me

The sordid story of Rev. Kevin Gray — the Waterbury priest charged with stealing more than a million dollars from his parish to pay for a secret life of homosexual debauchery in New York — is a scandal to Catholics and an opportunity for anti-Catholics. But the faithful must keep both the scandal and Connecticut’s … Read more

‘How Soccer Is Ruining America’

With World Cup festivities kicking off in South Africa today, I think I’m  going to post this article by Stephen Webb (originally published at First Things last year) and then just back away slowly: Soccer is running America into the ground, and there is very little anyone can do about it. Social critics have long … Read more

First Things special offer

Many readers of this blog also read First Things… or at least, would like to read it. Now you’ve got no excuse. The Anchoress is plugging a great deal today: a subscription to First Things for only $20. That’s half the regular price. The sale ends tomorrow, so be sure to check it out. That’s … Read more

The socio-economic costs of contraception

The current issue of First Things has an important piece by Timothy Reichert examining the social impact of contraception. He argues that the modern contraceptive culture has led to “a massive redistribution of wealth and power from women and children to men.” The popular use of birth control has split the “market” governing gender relations … Read more

Friday Free-for-All

A few links to kick off your Friday:  CNS on the Vatican’s response to the New York Times article yesterday claiming that the Holy See was involved in covering up the horrifying abuse of boys at a school for the deaf in Milwaukee.  Social security goes into defecit for the first time, six years ahead … Read more

The Killer Instinct

God has blessed my wife and I with five wonderful, wonderfully rambunctious boys. By necessity, I find myself more than passingly familiar with the struggles and rewards that accompany the “Nine and Under – Exclusively Male” crowd. A home as heavily testosterone-laden as ours provides unique challenges, and in a society that seems to struggle with just exactly what … Read more

Superhuman: The Uncharted Territory of Transhumanism

Cryonics. Neural implants. Designer babies. Welcome to the future of transhumanism. This energetic movement, comprising thousands of adherents, actively promotes the enhancement of humans via cybernetics, genetics, medicine, surgery, nanotechnology, and a full panoply of other scientific advancements. This enhancement would, according to Nick Bostrom’s “Transhumanist Declaration,” seek to advocate “the moral right for those … Read more

Anybody Need a Used Laetare Medal?

As years go, 2009 so far hasn’t been one for the ages. Our economic crisis continues to worsen (my 401ks have tanked so badly I’m thinking of putting what’s left of my retirement money into Chinese armament futures), while our government’s response consists of borrowing money to fund bankruptcy as usual. In Iowa, gay marriage … Read more

The Myth of Catholic Art: An Unmanifesto

In this Crisis Magazine classic, painter and art critic Maureen Mullarkey argues that there’s no such thing as uniquely “Catholic art.”   Is there a uniquely Catholic approach to art? What is legitimate Catholic art? How can a Catholic make a significant difference in the artistic community? How should Catholics approach secular art? What might … Read more

Condoms and the Pope: The Facts

In spite of the media hype surrounding Pope Benedict XVI’s statement regarding the AIDS crisis in Africa, there is ample evidence to suggest the pope has a point. To judge whether this is true, one need only look at the facts — first with respect to the effectiveness of condoms in preventing the spread of … Read more

Richard John Neuhaus, 1936 – 2009

    About 25 years ago, I had the first of many dinners with the Rev. Richard John Neuhaus, when he was still a Lutheran. He objected to the term "converting" for a baptized Christian who became Catholic: Rather, such a one "embraced" Catholicism. I demurred, as I thought I had converted, albeit not from … Read more

Claiming Shakespeare

When Joseph Pearce’s epically titled The Quest for Shakespeare was released from Ignatius Press earlier this year, the Catholic blogosphere erupted with reports that William Shakespeare was finally, 400 years after the fact, proud to be papist. Although early modernists (a.k.a. Renaissance scholars) have been pondering Shakespeare’s possible relationship with the Romish Church for decades … Read more

Human Dignity

As if doffing the black robes of judges and donning the mantles of secular pontiffs, three justices of the United States Supreme Court on June 29, 1992, delivered themselves of this profession of faith: “At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and … Read more

Reawakening the Catholic Literary Scene

In April, Todd M. Aglialoro asked readers of this site, “What happened to Catholic fiction, and how do we effect its renewal?” This question — which generated over 100 responses — could be broadened: How do we renew Catholic literature? William Baer has been asking the same thing, and has been taking tangible steps toward … Read more

McCain and the Pope

Sen. John McCain cannot win in November without the Catholic vote, which is around 25 percent of the electorate. How is he going to get it? The worst thing he could assume is that it is going to fall into his lap because Catholics will have nowhere else to go. Some people with nowhere to … Read more

A Double Standard for Catholic Judges?

The recent partial-birth abortion case, in which the Supreme Court upheld certain restrictions passed by a state legislature, generated what has become the usual — and uncontroversial — anti-Catholic venting by the nation’s chattering classes. Commentators huffed that the majority in the case was composed of Catholics who, it was whispered, may have acted on … Read more

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