Donald DeMarco

Donald DeMarco is professor emeritus of Saint Jerome’s University and an adjunct professor at Holy Apostles College and Seminary. He is a regular columnist for the Saint Austin Review and the author, most recently, of Reflections on the Covid-19 Pandemic: A Search for Understanding.

recent articles

reading

Storytelling at Christmas Time

Christmas heralds the importance of life, the discarding of sin, and seizing the opportunities to do good things. It challenges the selfish to think of others; it urges the desperate to have hope.

child reading

Disabling the Minds of Children

“Pride goeth before a fall,” as the Good Book tells us. But prior to the fall, there is often a leap. The proud person believes he can do things that are far beyond his ability. Being ignorant, incompetent, or unqualified are not factors that deter him from attempting to do what he cannot do. A … Read more

Marx Brothers

The Self-Destructive Path of Being “Inclusive”

Lorne Park Baptist Church in Mississauga, Ontario, has fired Rev. Junia Joplin after he announced his transitioning from a male to a female. The congregants voted to terminate his employment, the majority for theological reasons. The chair of the church’s executive council stated that Joplin was offered “a fair severance.” Nonetheless, he is suing for … Read more

church fire

Who Are the Barbarians of Today?

Harsha Walia, a month after she called for Catholic churches to be burned “down,” resigned from her post as executive director of a Canadian civil rights group after a public outcry. She sparked an online fury in calling for violence against Catholic churches stating “Burn it all down.” Nonetheless, her approval of violence was not … Read more

Hotel

The Catholic Church is Not a Hotel

A considerable part of education is merely restating the obvious. No one would answer the question, “Is the Church a hotel?” in the affirmative when the question is stated this bluntly.  Nonetheless, the heresy of identifying her with a hotel sneaks in through the back door. In this way, what should be obvious is obscured … Read more

Diversity

The Futility of Diversity

Diversity is a time-honored word in the philosophy of art. But it never stands alone. Just as a string is needed to hold pearls in place to form a necklace, so too, a principle of unity is needed to wed a diversity of factors into a work of art. Hence the adage that art is … Read more

Hate Speech

Hate Speech and the Death of Philosophy

One of the most important distinctions we can make during these troubled times is between philosophy and ideology. Philosophy is the search for truth employing the universal human faculty of reason. Therefore, philosophy is for everyone. An ideology, on the other hand, is limited to a set of ideas that does not have a universal … Read more

Rights

When Rights Are Wrong

There are few topics that are of greater importance than “rights.” At the same time, the topic of rights has been egregiously misunderstood and fraudulently represented. What are rights? Are they the exclusive domain of human beings? What is the basis of a right? How can rights be protected? Can there be rights without duties? … Read more

Classroom

The Offensiveness Pandemic

It is impossible these days to be a university professor and not be accused of offending someone. Offensiveness is now regarded as a synonym for disagreement. I recall presenting to my class a distinction that psychologist Abraham Maslow made concerning two types of cognition. “Deficiency cognition” (D-cognition) occurs when an object is experienced partially or … Read more

Bible

Should Scripture Be More Trans-Friendly?

The Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals (U.K.) have issued a new set of guidelines that introduces an assortment of “trans-friendly” terms. The concern is to avoid offending people who have been transgendered by insisting that there is such a thing as distinct sexes. The guidelines instruct doctors, nurses, and midwives to use gender-neutral terms. Thus, … Read more

boy and girl

Equality without Windows

My daughter’s high school required her to wear a black cardigan sweater. So off we went to a clothing store so that she could be in full conformity with the school’s dress code. The sales clerk, however, told us that none were in stock. Nonetheless, my daughter, while browsing, discovered exactly what she was looking … Read more

The Shape of Love

“You can’t judge a book by its cover” is a truism. Nonetheless, that does not lessen the value of a book’s title. Selecting the right title is important, like giving the right name to your child. I chose The Shape of Love to introduce my book about the importance of moral virtue, and its rootedness … Read more

Sorry, Mr. Trudeau. Christmas Isn’t Yours to Cancel

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has declared that “there will be no Christmas this year.” When I read that, my thoughts immediately turned to a popular song containing the charmingly inverted opening lyrics, “There’ll always be a Christmas; a Christmas there’ll always be.” Sometimes there is more truth in popular songs than in political pronouncements. … Read more

Where Caesar’s Priests Draw the Line

Canadians, unlike their feistier counterparts in the United States, tend to be law abiding, even to the point of submissiveness. Revolution was never in the genes. When the government urges them to wear masks to help ease the threat of spreading the Covid-19 virus, they are expected to comply, and comply without complaint. A parishioner … Read more

The ‘Days of Rage’ Are Upon Us

“Days of Rage,” which has characterized the extended riots in Seattle and in other American cities, was borrowed from the riots of the late sixties conducted by the SDS (Students for a Democratic Society) and its faction, The Weathermen. Why the rage? Many of the radicals in both instances came from affluent families. And why … Read more

The Cancelling of Flannery O’Connor

It has been 56 years since Flannery O’Connor passed from the earth at the all-too-young age of 39. Her legacy as an outstanding writer and extraordinary human being seemed firmly established. However, two precipitating factors have led to her previously untarnished legacy being questioned and the removal of her name from a residence hall at … Read more

My Country Is My Identity

I am an individual. That is to say, I am the sum of all my idiosyncratic traits, inclinations, and unique accomplishments. I am also a person, which includes all my relationships with others, including the long-gone members of my family tree. When I say that I am an American, I contain the contributions of all … Read more

Without Authority, There Is No Freedom

Dr. Ben Carson offers some badly needed wisdom when he speaks about the vandalism, looting, and other forms of anti-social behavior that seem to be escalating in the United States. The remedy to the problem, he states, lies within the family. Unfortunately, “it is almost politically incorrect to talk about family values,” he told Fox … Read more

A Failure of Reason

Man is a rational animal. The capacity for reason is ingrained in his nature. He cannot be truly himself without living by the light of human reason. Saint Thomas Aquinas understood the social implications of reason and saw it as a means by which all people can communicate with each other on a common basis. … Read more

America, Post-Logic

In genius and influence, according to Christopher Dawson, Abu Hamed Mohammad Ghazali (1058–1111) most resembles Saint Thomas Aquinas. This is indeed high praise. The Persian scholar’s most famous work is The Destruction of Philosophy (Tehâfat el Falâsifah). As a Moslem thinker, he saw clearly the fundamental incompatibility between the Moslem faith and the Greek conception … Read more

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