In the time of King David, the Bible says that the tribe of Issachar produced shrewd warriors “who understood the times and knew what Israel should do” (1 Chron 12:32). In a similar way, we need to become wise people whose faith interacts with the world.
To that end, I share articles/resources I have found helpful recently in thinking about broader cultural and societal issues (be sure to see the disclaimer at the bottom). May these give you greater insight, so that you may continue the tradition of Issachar. Past emails are archived at http://glenandpaula.com/wordpress/category/links
- From the people-are-awesome department: Is This New Swim Stroke The Fastest Yet? (Regan Penaluna, Nautilus): how are we still discovering stuff like this?
- From the leviathan-is-scary department:
- Criminal Law 2.0 (Alex Kozinski, Georgetown Law Journal): it’s long but gripping. The problems with America’s justice system go way beyond the actions of officers on patrol.
- Wisconsin’s Shame: I Thought It Was A Home Invasion (David French, National Review): the gag orders are the most distressing component of this story.
- The Injustice of Civil-Asset Forfeiture (Conor Friedersdorf, The Atlantic): yet another depressing feature of American law.
- On the flip side, it’s still way better here than many other places: The Hidden Reason For Poverty The World Needs to Address Now (Gary Haugen, TED Talk): Haugen, incidentally, is a devout Christian.
- From the methodology matters department: Tallying Right-Wing Terror vs Jihad (Megan McArdle, Bloomberg View) — I am not super-interested in the topic itself, but I found this piece fascinating as an example of how important research methodology is. Hone your craft!
- From the grace abounds department: An Evangelical Revival In The Heart of New York (Liz Robbins, New York Times): this is about an event hosted by Luis Palau, not an eruption of piety in the Big Apple, although the article notes that the number of evangelicals in NYC has increased by 20% since 2000. This related story adds fascinating details: Saturday’s Big Evangelism Event In Central Park Fueled By Community Service With A Blessing From A Gay Mayor In Portlandia (Pauline Dolle, A Journey Through NYC Religions).
Chi Alpha is not a partisan organization. To paraphrase another minister: we are not about the donkey’s agenda and we are not about the elephant’s agenda — we are about the Lamb’s agenda. Having said that, I read widely (in part because I believe we should aspire to pass the ideological Turing test and in part because I do not believe I can fairly say “I agree” or “I disagree” until I can say “I understand”) and may at times share articles that have a strong partisan bias simply because I find the article stimulating. The upshot: you should not assume I agree with everything an author says in an article I mention, much less things the author has said in other articles.