06/01/1999

Introduction In the first phase of the groundbreaking report on the Catholic voter (November 1998), Crisis profiled that powerful, but notoriously finicky, voter bloc. The striking fact the report revealed is that Catholic voting patterns are not as hard to pin down as conventional wisdom once suggested—that is, once you remove voters who keep the [...]

Introduction In the first phase of the groundbreaking report on the Catholic voter (November 1998), Crisis profiled that powerful, but notoriously finicky, voter bloc. The striking fact the report revealed is that Catholic voting patterns are not as hard to pin down as conventional wisdom once suggested—that is, once you remove voters who keep the [...]

In November 1998, Crisis published the results of the first phase of its Catholic Voter Project. "The Mind of the Catholic Voter," by Robert Novak, chronicled Catholics' exodus from the Democratic Party and their increasing tendency to adopt a conservative pattern of voting. The CRISIS study established that this movement was strongly correlated to frequency [...]

Is it possible to craft social legislation that is effective, but at the same time accommodates the obligations of human dignity? I believe it is and would like to discuss my efforts, through welfare reform and other targeted social, charitable, and educational reforms, to do so. In 1996, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation [...]

By the mystery of this water and wine may we come to share in the divinity of Christ, who humbled himself to share in our humanity. This prayer, offered quietly by the deacon or priest at Mass, often goes unnoticed. It is the prayer said in preparation of the cup of wine that will soon [...]

Cybernetics (basically, the science of the brain qua computer) explains much more than we realized. They used to think schizophrenia was due to demons. Then it was bad parenting. Now some think it may be bad brain wiring. They used to think deja vu ("Hey! I've been here before!") was evidence of reincarnation. Now we [...]

In a recent Washington Post op-ed (May 6, 1999), Richard Cohen unveiled a strategy that pro-life forces will need to resist before the next presidential election. Like Cohen, abortion advocates are likely to bait pro-lifers over the next 18 months, preaching that their presidential candidates lack integrity if they don't make abortion the major theme [...]

Jack Kevorkian, America's most notorious (and notoriously successful) serial killer finally came to justice in late March when a Michigan jury convicted him of killing Thomas Youk. In three prior cases, juries pulled out their hankies and gave Kevorkian the benefit of the doubt for a practice they didn't like but couldn't bring themselves to [...]

In the mid-1980s, as people began to ponder the question of a successor to Ronald Reagan, there was a flicker of interest in Senator Paul Laxalt of Nevada. But one veteran of the Goldwater campaign observed that one of the lessons learned in that campaign was that a candidate from a small state found it [...]

In the anxious hours following the Columbine High School shootings, America's television screens repeatedly showed a slow-motion film clip in which a black-clad, shotgun-toting boy bursts into a classroom and fills his fellow students full of buckshot. The gunman was teen idol Leonardo DiCaprio, the star of Titanic, and the clip came not from a [...]

Several years ago in The New York Times, critic Richard Taruskin spoke of Danish composer Vagn Holmboe, who was born in 1909, as "possibly the greatest living traditional symphonist." I wish I had written that. In fact, I had intended to, but it was too late, as Holmboe died in 1996. However, I believe that [...]

Your scrivener writes these words with caution, for he is well aware of the power of coincidences to drive men mad. When someone mistakenly attributes a coincidence to enigmatic causes, the mind can reel right off the edge. I think of that woman who went bonkers ever so briefly when she blamed the New York [...]

As we all learned at mother's knee, we should not judge by appearances. Indeed, as our Lord told us, we are not supposed to judge in an ultimate sense at all. But an incarnational religion has to take seriously what the material world shows. I write in the immediate after-math of the horrible massacre at [...]

The last thing I wanted to do on a Saturday morning was discuss my husband's death with 20 women. Not that he had died; neither had theirs. But, encouraged by him, I signed up for a workshop on what to do if suddenly widowed. Leading this sobering examination was a woman whose fate had been [...]

In July and August of 1939, just before World War II began, Msgr. Ronald Knox gave five sermons on the "Our Father"—my edition of his Pastoral Sermons does not indicate where, probably at Oxford. Some 60 years later, the pope asks us to devote this final year of the 20th century to God the Father. [...]

This laconic statement in Psalm 36 does not, of course, express a choice of the psalmist. It is the realistic observation of a man lucky to have lived long enough to make it. We are the age we are whether we like it or not, but there are good and bad ways of accepting it. [...]

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