On Fridays I share articles/resources about broad cultural, societal and theological issues. Be sure to see the explanation and disclaimers at the bottom.
Things Glen Found Interesting
- “Me too” social science is not fighting inequality (Kevin T. Leicht, Work in Progress): an article about how academics can improve society. The author is a sociologist at the University of Illinois Urbana‐Champaign.
- U.S. investigating potential covert Russian plan to disrupt November elections (Dana Priest, Ellen Nakashima and Tom Hamburger, Washington Post): “U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies are investigating what they see as a broad covert Russian operation in the United States to sow public distrust in the upcoming presidential election and in U.S. political institutions, intelligence and congressional officials said.” The 2016 elections will make an amazing television series a generation from now.
- The Idle Army: America’s Unworking Men (Nicolas Eberstadt, Wall Street Journal): the author doesn’t say it here, but video games and pornography are huge enablers of this phenomenon. This is one of those trends that everyone will be talking about in 10–15 years.
- You are not your brain: Why a head transplant is not what you think it is (Charles Camosy, Religion News Service): this was mind‐blowing. Pun intended. With me, the pun is always intended.
- How A Cakemaker Became An Enemy Of The State (David Harsyani, The Federalist): “Christians are regularly compared to Southern segregationists and racists, when in reality the comparison is best reversed. Yes, the power of Jim Crow reflected popular will, but it was sanctioned by the state. The Colorado Civil Rights Commission is similarly empowered by the state to use its arbitrary power to destroy the reputations, businesses, and lives of those who happen to offend their sensibilities.” See also the alarming comments of the US Commission on Civil Rights Chairman.
- Reverse Voxsplaining: Drugs vs. Chairs (SlateStarCodex, the author is a doctor who writes under pseudonym). This was a stimulating piece about the EpiPen controversy to which Vox had a rejoinder to which the author offered a surrejoinder. Informative and full of provocative statements such as “prescription drug price regulation would cost one billion life‐years, which would very slightly edge out Communist China for the title of Worst Thing Ever.” For an interesting unrelated‐yet‐related companion piece, see the brief Two “The Rest of the Story” Stories (Alex Tabbarok, Marginal Revolution).
- What Does The Bible Say About Transgenderism? (Kevin DeYoung., Gospel Coalition): “We understand that following Christ means dying to ourselves (Matt. 16:24), being renewed in our minds (Rom. 12:2), and no longer walking as we once did (Eph. 4:17–18). Being ‘true to ourselves’ is always a false choice when it means going against God’s Word.”
- Porn Is Bad (Pascal‐Emmanuel Gobry, The Week): “It took decades to recognize smoking for the public health disaster that it is, and to finally get a grip on it societally. Although porn doesn’t cause cancer, there’s good evidence that it does destroy lives and families.”
Things Glen Found Amusing
- Ancient Documents Confirm ‘Selah’ Best Translated ‘Extended Guitar Solo’ (Babylon Bee): “the term actually instructed Hebrew worship bands to shred across all six‐strings in a blistering, melodic guitar solo.”
- A Jesus pun.
- That awkward moment when missionaries tell you that you might be the antichrist and you get excited. It actually happened.
- Jesus Visits Town, Trailing Controversy (James Martin, America): if the media covered Jesus the way they cover Mother Theresa. Spot on. Read a great rebuttal to the debunking articles you may have seen.
- Drama Still Tragically Following Woman Who Just Hates Drama (Babylon Bee): we all have that friend. If you don’t have that friend then ask all your friends if they have that friend. If they avoid eye contact and try to redirect the conversation, look in the mirror and rebuke yourself.
Why Do You Send This Email?
In the time of King David, 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. I pray this email gives you greater insight, so that you may continue the tradition of Issachar.
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 (although if I strongly disagree with something in the article I’ll usually mention it).
Also, remember that I’m not reporting news — I’m giving you a selection of things I found interesting. There’s a lot happening in the world that’s not making an appearance here because I haven’t found stimulating articles written about it.
Archives at http://glenandpaula.com/wordpress/category/links.