Every now and then, Christianity Today publishes something I find really thought-provoking. Recently, they published an article about why black slaves adopted the religion of their masters. As a history buff and a Bible nerd, I find things like this fascinating. The article re-enforced my understanding that there are two competing Christianities in the world today: the liberation kind, and the kind that creates slaves rather than freeing them.
A survivor of the Parkland shooting last week, Cameron Kasky, recently spoke with CNN’s Anderson Cooper where he harshly criticized Republicans for selling their votes to the NRA.
In a poignant statement, Kasky slammed conservative politicians who offered nothing more than thoughts and prayers when what we need is real action in tightening gun control laws.
But his most damning statement was about Republicans’ deeply misplaced priorities. This “pro-life” party, he said, refuses to do anything to prevent more kids from being murdered in their schools, yet they lose their freaking minds if Christian bakers are asked to make cakes for same-sex weddings:
Christianity Today has had remarkable clarity on the #MeToo and #ChurchToo movements lately, so the following piece about how the “transgender narrative” apparently perpetuates negative gender stereotypes is more of a disappointment than usual. Granted, it’s not exactly unexpected, given that this is a publication that believes committed gay and lesbian couples are “destructive to society.”
Without using a single scientific, peer-reviewed study to support her claims (naturally), Nancy Pearcey writes about being transgender even though it’s clear her understanding of the topic is narrow at best. (The piece is adapted from her new book.)
We’ve seen a lot of think pieces over the past year attempting to put a logical spin on evangelical support for Donald Trump. At this point it seems that all their justifications are worn-out clichés and do nothing to redeem their image in the eyes of everyone outside their religious circle.
But conservative commentator Dennis Prager gives it one more try in a piece for Townhall:
Religious Christians and Jews who support Trump understand that the character of a public leader is quite often less important than his policies. This is so obvious that only the naive think otherwise. Character is no predictor of political leadership on behalf of moral causes. I wish it were. Then, in any political contest, we would simply have to determine who the better person is and vote accordingly.
Perhaps Prager believes this, but it’s intellectually dishonest to pretend as if personal character never mattered to his conservative contemporaries when choosing a president. Judging by the way said contemporaries have bent over backwards to excuse every derogatory word out of Trump’s mouth, it’s clear that there’s a major caveat to character being of lesser importance than policies: a president can get away with just about anything, as long as he commits to anti-abortion policies.
Donald Trump will become the first sitting president to speak at the annual anti-abortion March for Life today via satellite, according to Ben Shapiro of The Daily Wire. This move once again panders to the fan base that got Trump elected in the first place and conveniently comes at a time the president is fighting back against allegations that he paid hush money to a porn star who he said reminded him of his daughter. (You know, family values.)
We live in a world where “gray rape” is a legitimate phenomenon; where consent is so often muddied that men walk away from sexual encounters feeling lucky, and the women they just slept with go home feeling violated. What is happening, and why?
In a recent article for the New York Times regarding the “gray rape” of a woman with the pseudonym Grace and comedian Aziz Ansari, writer Bari Weiss would have you believe that feminism is the root cause of all the confusion, by turning women into helpless damsels too afraid to use their words:
I started calling myself a Christian in the fall of 2008 – nearly ten years ago. I accepted a friend’s invitation to check out my school’s chapter of Campus Crusade for Christ, fulfilling my long-term fascination with the man who called himself God.
This isn’t an unusual story for a lot of people. Becoming “born again” is nothing scandalous in America. Unless your family is Jewish, as mine is.
The new Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C. spends what seems to be a disproportionate amount of time on the history of the Old Testament rather than the New, according to a review in the Washington Post.
That’s significant to many since that’s the section of the Bible without Jesus (depending on who you ask, anyway). The museum gift shop also sells Jewish items such as menorahs and mezuzahs, and the sounds of people praying in Hebrew can be heard through loudspeakers.In many ways, then, the museum seems like a very Jew-friendly place. Yet many Jews are skeptical of the museum. Why is that?
In a recent interview with ABC News, actor Matt Damon ignited a controversy with comments about sexual assault in Hollywood:
“I do believe that there’s a spectrum of behavior…And we’re going to have to figure out — you know, there’s a difference between, you know, patting someone on the butt and rape or child molestation, right? Both of those behaviors need to be confronted and eradicated without question, but they shouldn’t be conflated, right?”
Damon’s comments have been taken to task on social media, most notably by actress Alyssa Milano, who tweeted in response, “Some forms of cancer are more treatable than others, but it’s still cancer.” Whether a woman is groped, told dirty remarks at work that make her uncomfortable, or brutally raped, the point is not to compare “how bad” the experience was. The root of all sexual mistreatment of women is male entitlement and rape culture, the “cancer” of our society.
You’re probably familiar with the movie Mean Girls, in which Lindsay Lohan plays Cady, a kindhearted (albeit naive) high school student who is taken under the wing of two misfits, Janis and Damian. But it’s not long until Cady is noticed by Regina, the popular “mean girl,” and is convinced by Janis and Damian to get close to Regina in an effort to sabotage her. The problem is that Cady ends up becoming one of those mean girls. There’s a pivotal scene in which Janis exposes this and says to Cady, “You’re not pretending anymore. You’re plastic. Cold, shiny, hard plastic.”
In other words, the mask you wear can eventually become you.