Whose Side Are They On?

As I’ve often observed, if Islam ever succeeds in subjugating America it won’t be primarily through force of arms, but through cultural jihad (aka stealth jihad). For cultural jihad to succeed, however, it’s necessary that there are enough people in the target culture who are willing to ignore it or even to facilitate it. Put [...]

Modern Liberty a Cruel Parody of Christian Freedom

As Easter comes ever closer the importance of the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ should be magnified for every Christian. Christians should not forget the underlying message of the Easter story—the freedom won in Christ’s death and resurrection. For this is one of two major competing stories in modernity, and one that modernity would [...]

A Jesuit Philosopher Who Championed Catholic Orthodoxy

Fun Is Not Enough (2017) is the collection of all 125 columns written by the late Father Francis Canavan, S.J., for the monthly catholic eye from April 1983 until November 2008, a couple of months before his death. The book was edited by Dr. Dawn Eden Goldstein, Assistant Professor of Dogmatic Theology at Holy Apostles College [...]

When Will the Shooting Stop?

The gun control debate has reignited with the recent Florida shooting. Despite the passionate commentaries on all sides, no one seems to be able to answer the question of when the shootings will stop. As much as liberal media want to blame guns, police or government, this is a moral problem. It involves the acts [...]

The History of a Tomorrow Without God

The bestselling book, Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow, is dangerous for Catholics of little faith. Rarely do you see a book that is so cunningly written to shake certainties and present as inevitable a stark and Godless future now being planned. The value of the book is not found in reading it. In [...]

What the Failure of Russian Liberalism Means for Us

A century on, the Russian Revolution still looms like a shadow from the past. Rather surprisingly, in a way, since the Cold War has been over for nearly three decades. Yet there is something enduringly fascinating and even romantic about the Russian Revolution: the collapse of tsarism, the mass uprising of the Russian people against [...]

Patrick Deneen Explains Why Liberalism Failed

Extreme freedom can’t be expected to lead to anything but a change to extreme slavery, whether for a private individual or for a city.   ∼ Plato’s Republic, Book VIII line 566 The capacity for self-criticism used to be a signature characteristic of the liberal mind, but clearly liberal introspection isn’t what it used to be. In looking [...]

Sexual Liberation and the Emergence of Transhumanism

Sexual liberation and transhumanism share an anthropology. Both view the human person as an emergent phenomenon, and as something malleable. Both view the self as sovereign, the will as ultimately answerable to nothing other than its own prerogatives. Exploring the intersection between these two movements requires me to give an account of technology. In speaking [...]

Liberal Myths Have Consequences

“Contemporary liberalism is less a political philosophy than a façade for undermining extant social and legal mores.”   ∼ John Safranek, The Myth of Liberalism, 2015. When I first looked into this insightful book of John Safranek titled The Myth of Liberalism, I was struck by the introductory sentence that he cited from Hegel’s Philosophy of Right. [...]

What Happened to American Liberalism?

In an obscure article entitled “Catholics and Liberals: Decline of Détente,” in America magazine in 1974, the eminent Catholic scholar and historian James Hitchcock discussed a profound change that had occurred in American liberalism and argued that its new thinking put it increasingly at odds with Catholicism. Hitchcock was one of a number of writers [...]

Why Liberal Governing Elites Seek to Neutralize Social Issues

Social issues are messy. They have to do with basic human connections, orientations, and aspects of identity. These include family, cultural community, religion, and relations between the sexes. So they have to do with basic and very complicated aspects of life that people feel strongly about. That causes problems for people who run things today. [...]

Author Says a New Religion Persecutes Christians

Mary Eberstadt is a master of analogy. In her masterful work Adam and Eve After the Pill, she compared the Sexual Revolution to communism, an ideology that hasn’t so much as failed, don’t you know, as one that simply needs one more good try. Neither empirical evidence, nor high body count, will convince true believers [...]

The Confessional State, Catholic or Liberal?

Why am I allowed to attend Mass on Sundays? Is it because God has commanded that I worship him, and having a social nature I must do so in union with my fellows within the bounds of the Church founded by Christ for that purpose, on the day he rose from the dead? Or is [...]

Liberalism: An Established Religion

Governments have often minimized religious conflict by establishing one religion and granting it privileges even where others are tolerated. The First Amendment to the United States Constitution left such power to the states, saying only that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion....” Following the enactment of the Fourteenth Amendment, however, the [...]

Why Does Liberalism Have “Favored Groups”?

Two recent developments in the news brought into focus the issue of liberalism and favored demographic groups. One was the not unexpected reaction of Hillary Clinton and others on the left to the Brussels airport attack by ISIS-linked Islamic terrorists. They were less oriented to considering how to respond to the terrorists and protect innocent [...]

The Advantages of Natural Law Over Ideological Fantasies

Last month I noted that Catholics, along with presenting the Faith, should try vigorously to make natural law more visible in public discussion. But how? The very idea of natural law provokes incomprehension today. It favors principles that aren't engineered or controlled, so they don't fit into a technological understanding of rationality. Even worse, it means [...]

Why Natural Law is a Superior Guide to Life

Catholics talk about natural law, but what’s it all about? Basically, it’s a system of principles that guides human life in accordance with our nature and our good, insofar as those can be known by natural reason. It thereby promotes life the way it evidently ought to be, based on what we are and how [...]

Liberalism, Conservatism, and Catholicism

We all talk about liberalism and conservatism, and about liberal and conservative Catholics, but what does it mean? Some say it doesn’t mean much at all. They say these are labels attached to arbitrary and even contradictory collections of positions. Liberals say they want lots of freedom and lots of regulations. Conservatives say they want [...]

Skepticism: The New Established Religion

Jefferson’s wall of separation has many friends. People who grew up in a nation with a strict separation of church and state are often very proud of that system, which they consider modern, and best-suited for democratic societies today and in the future. This includes both skeptics of all (organized) religions and many religious people [...]

Can a Christian be a Social Liberal?

Faith should penetrate all areas of life—not just the religious, but also the social, the economic, and even the political. Notwithstanding the confused claims of today’s radical secularists, we are not constitutionally required to set our faith aside when entering the world of politics. Separation of Church and state does not mean separation of Church [...]

Nine Lessons from the Obergefell Decision

The cultural left is intoxicated with the heady fumes of the June 26 Obergefell decision. There are veritable war whoops coming out of the secular newspapers, and the pundits are huffily declaring that the debate is over and that their side has won. George Takei has even seen fit to call Justice Clarence Thomas a [...]