14th Amendment

Am I Really Gonna Have To Write About This Yet Again … ?

Am I Really Gonna Have To Write About This Yet Again … ?

14th Amendment, 5th Amendment, autonomy, awareness, bigotry, Challenge, Change, Child Abuse, Christianity, Church, citizenship, civics, conflict, conservatism, constitution, Criminal Procedure, critical judgment, culture, Current Events, death, Education, Equality, faithfulness, Fascism, First Amendment, history, Ideology, Incarceration, injustice, Judicial Review, Justice Clarence Thomas, Marbury v. Madison, Muslims, Patheos, Religion, Secularity, Uncategorized
… but I suppose the answer is “Yes, I will have to write on this subject again, just as I have before.” This time around, I am writing in response to what Patheos rather breathlessly describes as a "constitutional horror":  Justice Thomas' assertion that, the "establishment" clause notwithstanding, States still have the right to designate certain religious / denominations as "official". As usual, and as is customary with all matters religious when people are given a breadth of audience that far exceeds their depth of knowledge, the hysteria is altogether overblown and unnecessary, due to an absence of working knowledge about the history of the subject – in this case, the interpretation of the “establishment” clause of the First Amendment. The whole point of what follows is a matter
Cracked Christmas Carols — A Yuletide Musicological Post Mortem

Cracked Christmas Carols — A Yuletide Musicological Post Mortem

"Life" Issues, 14th Amendment, 5th Amendment, Abrahamic Traditions, Advent, awareness, bible, Christ Child, Christianity, Christmas, conservatism, critical judgment, culture, December, faith, Gospel of Luke, Holy Mystery, Ideology, misogyny, monotheism, Mystery, Myth, Numinous, praying with music, Religion, Secularity, Uncategorized, Women
Now that Christmas is over -- unless you celebrate Christmas from the first Sunday of Advent through and including the Feast of the Epiphany -- it might be a good time to examine the political and ideological questions raised by Christmas carols ... which I do in this week's "Skeptic's Collection" column in hopes of increasing the "woke-ness" level for Christmas of 2019. No reason to thank me ... ===================================================== Recently, the cultural outrage factory, never short of work, has managed to evoke a sense of high dudgeon about the allegedly sexist lyrics, amounting to an advocacy of date rape, attaching to the well-known Christmas carol “Baby It’s Cold Outside”. Before following the controversy on Facebook, I would have thought that this kerfuffle
My Persistent And Impossible Dilemma

My Persistent And Impossible Dilemma

14th Amendment, 8th Amendment, citizenship, civics, community, conflict, constitution, critical judgment, Discernment, Enlightenment, Equality, First Amendment, Ideology, Juries, law, political rhetoric, Rationality, Uncategorized
The following is a true story.  It is a story that has been haunting me for the past 20-plus years. The reason it has been haunting me is because I may have been inadvertantly complicit in convicting a man of a serious drug charge by denying him the benefit of the principle of the presumptive innocence of a defendant in a criminal trial. I make no judgment as to the man’s actual guilt. That will be as it may. The point, rather, is that, in retrospect, I believe that we, the jury in the trial, followed the letter of what seemed in retrospect to be a very bad law and -- pursuant to that law -- presumed the man to be guilty, and that this presumption seemed to be “hard coded” into the relevant drug-possession law.  At the time, we believed we acted in good faith, because we believed o