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memorial day

The bugle call Taps is played by the US military at dusk, and at military funerals and commemorations. Perhaps the most famous playing of Taps was at the 1963 funeral of President John F. Kennedy. This bugle call was arranged in 1862 during the US Civil War by Union Army General Butterfield. Within months it was being used by both Union and Confederate armies. In 1874 Taps was officially recognized by the United States Army.

There are lyrics to Taps. When sung they are, like the simple 24-note tune, both calming and haunting: Read More…

disagreement & charity

This past weekend graduates walked out of Notre Dame’s commencement when Vice President Pence began his speech. By all accounts they protested respectfully, departing quietly. They acted out of disagreement with some policy of the Trump administration, likely immigration policy. Critics said students should have heard-out Mr Pence, but Administration policies are readily available and widely known. So it’s unlikely the protestors acted ignorantly.

The apostle Paul initiated a meeting with those who disagreed with him. And give them credit, they accepted.
Read More…

Ah! Mother, mother

All Quiet on the Western Front has strangely but accurately been labeled both the greatest war novel, and the greatest anti-war novel of all time. The original copyright, in 1928 as Im Westen Nichts Neues, was by a WW1 German combat veteran. Erich M. Remarque’s novel, which was banned by the Nazis, includes an account of a combat soldier home on leave. Read More…

freedom of expression

Free speech is now suspect. Students at Vermont’s Middlebury College shut down a speech by social scientist Charles Murray, sending one Middlebury professor to hospital. Across the country violence at UC Berkeley forced the cancelation of a speech by Milo Yiannopoulos. Perhaps like me, you see such events as evidence of an illiberalism infecting our post-Christian culture.

Jonathan Haidt of New York University sees something more. He claims campus protests that shut down free speech are rituals carried out by adherents of a new religion. Read More…


Trangenderism. That’s the term lawyer David Boyle used in his friend of the court brief concerning the transgendered boy (born a female) whose suit of the Gloucester County School District in Virginia went to the US Supreme Court. The student wanted to use male bathrooms. The school district objected, offering the accommodation of private bathrooms.

I’ve spent weeks slogging through this case’s
Proceedings and Orders, looking for the science—the biology that supports transgenderism. I must be missing something because I’ve found nothing. In fact I’ve failed to locate the science that supports transgender claims. Read More…