Category: Society & Culture

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Southern Baptists Versus the South

The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) has over 15 million members.  With over 46,000 churches, they are present in all 50 states (as well as several foreign countries).  It is the largest Protestant denomination in the United States.  Nonetheless, for nine

Green Balance of Power
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Green Balance of Power

A subplot of the 2016 presidential campaign was the Green Party’s ability, for the second time in the 21st century, to achieve balance of power in a close race won by a Republican.  Physician Jill Stein, 66, earned 1.4 million

Delenda Est Academia
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Delenda Est Academia

In the Winter 2015/2016 issue of the Claremont Review of Books, William Voegeli argues,

Conservatives have been firing shots across the bow of higher education for years, but the Ship of Fools has never turned back, or changed course. 

Alex Smith
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Alex Smith

Just after 6 p.m. on Super Bowl Sunday, February 7, 2016, a tuxedo-clad Alex Smith sat alone on stage at a grand piano near the 50-yard line in Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California, set to accompany Lady Gaga as

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Our Progressive Sexual Apartheid

I recently attended a rock concert where the headline act—an artful blend of political correctness and antic comedy dressed in a leopard-skin overcoat under a silver wig—lectured us at some length on the need to respect women.  His remarks were

Fighting the Dragon With Solzhenitsyn
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Fighting the Dragon With Solzhenitsyn

Do great men make history?  Or does history make great men?  One thing’s for sure: History sometimes smothers great men, as Thomas Gray suggests in his famous elegy written in a country churchyard, and as the rows of endless graves

Steadfast Sessions
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Steadfast Sessions

President and five-star Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower said that a man must “believe in his luck” in order to lead.  Jeff Sessions is such a man.  He has not only survived multiple setbacks, considered career ending by many, but has

Forgetting Colin Kaepernick
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Forgetting Colin Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick, the former star quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers, made the decision during the 2016 NFL preseason to kneel during the playing of the National Anthem.  Other athletes quickly followed suit, some by kneeling, others by raising a

Signs of Hope in the East
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Signs of Hope in the East

In the United States, the forces of the cultural left have been particularly aggressive in seeking to diminish the influence of our Christian heritage on American society.

The Obama administration has led the campaign for the complete separation of religion

Beating Affirmative Action
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Beating Affirmative Action

Is the composition of the Supreme Court the be-all and end-all of important societal conflicts?  Are there effective ways that conservatives can address these conflicts—manifest in political battles over such things as affirmative action—apart from the Court?

The Supreme Court’s

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The Equality Shell Game

“For there is no longer Jew nor Greek, neither free man nor slave, neither man nor woman,” says Pseudo-Paul, the apostle to the Americans, “but all are equal in Christ Jesus.”  He has been studying his Pseudo-John, wherein the risen

Addressing the Media Addressing Trump
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Addressing the Media Addressing Trump

The U.S. media establishment has been up to its usual occupation during a presidential season: harrumphing, growling, tut-tutting at the idea of putting a non-“mainstream candidate”—someone other than a liberal Democrat, that is—in charge of anything more consequential, in Washington

Ruminations Amidst the Ruins
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Ruminations Amidst the Ruins

In the winter of 1987-88, Sen. Dan Quayle of Indiana decided that he wanted the VP spot on the Republican ticket as the most “conservative” candidate.  He started his quiet campaign by running the idea by my boss, Sen. Jesse

The Body as Billboard
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The Body as Billboard

The blind poet Milton, praying for divine inspiration, tells us what he misses most since losing his sight:

Thus with the year

Seasons return, but not to me returns

Day, or the sweet approach of even or morn,

Or sight

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Rise of the Trumps

Come November, Donald Trump may go down in flames.  Or he might continue to surprise and astonish us.  But the Trump children, regardless of whether their father is ever again allowed in GOP polite company, are another matter.

The display

Soldier Girls and the Stakes of War
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Soldier Girls and the Stakes of War

President Obama is keeping his promise of “fundamentally transforming” the nation, especially when it comes to the military.

Women have been voluntarily serving in the Army officially since 1901, but today, with new policies being introduced at a rapid pace,

The “Punishment” of Women
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The “Punishment” of Women

Questions concerning the relationship between morality and law were reignited when, during the Republican primary campaign, Donald Trump commented on the matter of abortion and (implicitly) women’s rights.  When pressed by a journalist, Trump stated that, yes, women should be

Earning Your Protest
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Earning Your Protest

Like many young men graduating high school in 1966, my father took a fast track to the politically seething, war-shattered jungles of a small country on the other side of the world.  He had no middle name, no college degree

Beyond Populism
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Beyond Populism

Donald Trump’s political success dramatizes the nature of today’s politics.  On  one side we have denationalized ruling elites with absolute faith in their own outlook and very little concern for Americans as Americans.  On the other we have an increasingly

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Orwell in Chains

George Orwell’s “Politics and the English Language” remains a lighthouse, the beam sweeping past the scene for a moment of blinding illumination before passing on to darkness.  Though Orwell enjoined us against cliché, Hamlet’s “More honoured in the breach than

The Sentinel
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The Sentinel

“Don’t mention the war,” my grandfather told me a few minutes before our guest, an old friend from the Business Administration faculty at the nearby university, joined us for lunch.  This was in Tacoma, Washington, in the summer of 1975,

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Not Your Mother’s Weasels

At the United Nations in the fall of 2009, Barack Obama acknowledged, with customary self-regard, “the expectations that accompany my presidency around the world,” no doubt referring to his pledge about the receding oceans, healing the planet and reviving the

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An Essay on the State of France

What follows is not an anthropometric description of France, but neither does it reflect the fancy of the author: It is what one can see of France from a certain distance, which blurs the finer details but allows the main

Sing Me Back Home
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Sing Me Back Home

Sing me back home with a song I used to hear

Make all my memories come alive

Take me away and turn back the years

Sing me back home before I die

Merle Haggard was a real American.  At its

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A Monumental Proposal

I was recently perplexed to see in the news that Harvard, the oldest institution of higher learning in the nation, had declared that, though master has no etymological relation to slavery (but rather to magister), the word would nevertheless

The Saudi-Iranian Blood Feud
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The Saudi-Iranian Blood Feud

Tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran, which have frequently flared over the years, reached full intensity this winter when the Saudi government executed 47 regime opponents, including the prominent Shi’ite cleric Nimr al-Nimr.  Immediately, there were riots in Iran directed

Game of Bones
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Game of Bones

So what is objectionable about Game of Thrones?

In posing the question, please note that I am assuming that something is objectionable.  So let me count the ways.  If we are talking about the books, the prose is klonkingly

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Donald Trump, the Court, and the Law

Is Donald Trump a Burkean?  Would Russell Kirk vote for him for president?  Can a paleoconservative legal scholar imagine any benefit to a Trump presidency?

Of course, the neoconservatives are piling on Trump.  Most notable was National Review’s January

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Snobs and Slobs

How very vulgar I have been—I am sorry, and I apologize!  I am just terrible, and it is all my fault.  And I accept the responsibility.  And how could I accept my own shame if I had not done so