Mark Stricherz

Mark Stricherz is the author of Why the Democrats Are Blue: Secular Liberalism and the Decline of the People's Party.

recent articles

Why George Orwell Was Pro-Life

More than three decades after the legalization of abortion, the story line has barely changed. Granted, technology, especially the increasing sophistication of ultrasound, is altering the debate. But if some disinterested screenwriter right now were to turn the script into a movie, what would it most closely resemble? I’d put my money on Inherit the … Read more

Is “Easy Rider” a Catholic Film?

The late Dennis Hopper’s film is associated of course with the counter culture; in fact, in the 1970s it inspired a bunch of movies that did not exactly uphold the values of traditional morality and the Establishment. Now, or a few weeks ago at least, conservative commenters say that all along the film has been … Read more

Talk on “Catholics in Political Life Today”

I am pleased to report that I will be speaking about “Catholics in Political Life Today ” with Ross Douthat and Melinda Henneberger on Wednesday June 2 at the Loyola University Chicago School of Law. The man to thank for organizing the talk is Dr. John Breen of Mirror of Justice fame. I can hear … Read more

Why Jesse James, Mark Souder, Tiger Woods, et. al Cheat

We Catholics used to be known for the importance we attached to marriage. But in my 13 years as a professional journalist, I rarely read Catholics discuss in detail why marriages succeed or fail. We talk about gay marriage, cohabitation, divorce and adultery, and out-of-wedlock childbearing. But never do we discuss a greater threat to … Read more

Pope Should Apologize and Explain

Benedict has been a great pope. His Regensburg Lecture will be admired for centuries. His encylicals, though dense, are profound and illuminating. And he is arguably the world leader in helping rid an institution of child sexual abuse. That said, all popes are fallible. Even Peter denied Christ three times. In the case of Benedict, … Read more

The RNC’s small-scale morality

I posted this over at my blog at TrueSlant, but it’s so short — what the heck — I’ll submit it for your disappoval here. For decades, the RNC allowed its employees to get a subsidized abortion. For one night, its young donors received an all-expenses-paid visit to a strip-and-bondage club. Guess which sin miscue … Read more

Your Dad’s Dems Passed Bills by Constitutional Means

On a related note to Eric’s post yesterday, I argued over at my TrueSlant blog that unlike their modern counterparts, Democrats of the 1960s passed legislation by constitutional means. Here is a snippet: As Robert Mann showed in his overlooked The Walls of Jericho, Democrats in the 1960s passed civil rights legislation by changing the … Read more

Christianity Has Become Too Worldly

IC readers likely will agree with the above statement. But hey, the argument is gaining traction, or it is if Luke Timothy Johnson , Ross Douthat , and Rod Dreher are an indication. Over at my blog at True Slant, I argue that Christianity’s materialistic turn has had positive and negative effects: To be fair, … Read more

You Can’t Hate Bart Stupak

The first story I wrote for Crisis opened with a scene, not a very good one, in Rep. Bart Stupak’s congressional office. So Stupak has always been in the back of my mind. But others must wonder how it could be that this backbencher could bring down the Democrats’ latest health-care reform effort. Some of … Read more

A Catholic confusion over health care

I have long been an admirer of Matthew Boudway’s writings. So I am mystified as to why he would call a federal policy that covers abortion but doesn’t subsdize it principled and ingenious. This must be a mistake.

Murder and Hope

  In the months before his death, Bilal Russell worked with emotionally disturbed kids at Black Family and Child Services of Arizona, a non-profit social services agency in Phoenix. He loved the work, visiting foster kids who had a history of physical and emotional abuse, or neglect. In fact, he and a friend hoped to … Read more

August 1968: The Roots of the Liberal Coup

  “What Goldwater was to Reagan, McGovern was to Obama,” New York Times writer Sam Tanenhaus wrote about the 2008 election, in reference to the two fathers of America’s modern political movements. The first story, about the conservative ascendancy in the Republican Party, has been told. The second, covering the liberal ascendancy in the Democratic … Read more

On Race and Class, Liberals Need a History Lesson

“I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on,” [Hillary Clinton] said. As evidence, Clinton cited an Associated Press article that she said “found how Sen. Obama’s support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me.” If … Read more

The Democrat who Created Catholic Republicans

Bobby Kennedy was dying. Emergency workers rushed him into the back of a waiting ambulance, accompanied by just two people. One was his wife, Ethel; the other, his de facto campaign chairman, Fred Dutton. No one else — neither friend nor family — rode along. But Dutton’s presence at that moment was no anomaly; few … Read more

The Death of the Bobby Kennedy Coalition

After he addressed the cheering crowd and television cameras, Bobby Kennedy was told that there had been a change in plans. Originally, he was supposed to wade through the crowd and walk to another room below, where he would speak on closed-circuit television. But Fred Dutton, his de facto campaign chairman, thought that the packed … Read more

Should Catholics Like Mike?

When Mike Huckabee was a young man, he was guided by three principles: Abortion is murder; save sex for marriage; and recognize our duty to help the weak and the poor. Now as a Republican candidate for president, Huckabee says that, if elected, he would govern the nation by the same values. It’s natural and … Read more

A Pro-Choice President Will Never End Abortion

As a practical matter, the argument that a pro-choice president will end abortion is far-fetched. Never in American history has a laissez-faire chief executive ended a great moral evil. Take slavery and de jure racial discrimination. Pro-slavery presidents did not end slavery; it was brought to its conclusion by Abraham Lincoln, who in his 1860 … Read more

Why I am a Catholic Democrat

The first in a three-part series, where prominent Catholic writers explain and defend their political orientation.   * * * In late 1993, I worked for the Jesuit Volunteer Corps to redevelop a poor, black neighborhood in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The area felt remote, almost uninhabited. From my front porch, I would often see lone … Read more

What Does the Shadow Know: A Conflict of Interest at CNN

When CNN political analyst Bill Schneider goes to work each day, he usually drives to the network’s Washington headquarters, parks his car in the underground garage, and, before taking the elevator up to his office on the eighth floor, enters the building through the back way. Schneider is not known, at least among the security … Read more

A Terrible Misunderstanding: How the Polls Distort Roe v. Wade

In June 2000, the Los Angeles Times released a poll that found Americans “evenly split” regarding Roe v. Wade, one of the two 1973 Supreme Court rulings that created a constitutional right to abortion. Forty-three percent of respondents indicated that they approved of the decision, while 42 percent disapproved. At the time, the Times’s poll … Read more

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