As the saying goes, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. It turns out that the intolerant spirit of Jerry Falwell (d. 2007) lives on in his son, Jerry Jr., who also happens to be the President of Liberty University, the school his father founded. (University presidencies that pass from father to son? Is […]
Why atheists shouldn’t object to the call to “Pray for Paris”
In the last two days the entire western world has been reeling from the horrific terrorist attacks on Paris. In response, twitter has seen hashtags like #PrayForParis and #Prayers4Paris trending as people far and wide join hands to stand in solidarity with the French people (even if “standing in solidarity” often consists of little more than a […]
Suicide Bombers in the Bible?
In his provocative book Laying Down the Sword: Why we can’t ignore the Bible’s violent verses (HarperOne, 2011), Philip Jenkins makes a provocative comparison between Samson’s final modus operandi and that of the contemporary Palestinian suicide bomber. He writes: “If Christians or Jews needed biblical texts to justify deeds of terrorism or ethnic slaughter, their […]
American-based terrorism, or, Why I think I’d like to be a Quaker
If any work of political science characterizes the modern age it must surely be Machiavelli’s “The Prince”. Our political leaders do whatever they can get away with to attain and retain power. Period. It’s almost enough to make me a Quaker. Case in point. It is now becoming clear that a team of elite US Navy […]
From the caves to the capitals: who are the terrorists?
My brain is, as they say, fried. And I am only one day into a five day stint of 36 hours of lecturing. The first casualty is sleep. The second is my voice. Alas, the third is the snappy and penetrating blogging which more than a dozen people spanning the globe have taken to reading. […]