Archives

For more level-headed lives

July 31, 2001

“For more level-headed lives” The Christian Science Monitor (July 31, 2001) p 11.
Americans, forever on their guard against the overbearing government, need to take a closer look at what is happening in the private sector.

Lawyers’ Spin Undercuts Public Faith in System

July 24, 2001

“Lawyers’ Spin Undercuts Public Faith in System” USA Today (July 24, 2001) p 13A.
The next time you hear Abbe Lowell, lawyer for Rep. Gary Condit, D-Calif., state that his client passed a lie detector test and fully cooperated with the police, there's every reason to be wary.

The Good Society: Goals Beyond Money

July 01, 2001

“The Good Society: Goals Beyond Money” The Futurist (July-August 2001), p 68
The great success of the economy in the 1990s alerted Americans to numerous moral and social questions that capitalism has never aspired to answer and that the state should not promote. These include moral questions such as what we owe our children, parents, and friends and neighbors, as well as people from other communities.

Tired of Fights Over Sex Education? Try This

June 26, 2001

“Tired of Fights Over Sex Education? Try This” USA Today (June 26, 2001), p 13A.
U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher says he wants to promote "responsible sex conduct."

The Third Way is a Triumph

June 25, 2001

“The Third Way is a Triumph” New Statesman (June 25, 2001), p 25.
There must be a secret prize for whoever comes up with the most dismissive epitaph for the Third Way.

Our Monochrome Values

June 04, 2001

“Our Monochrome Values” Christian Science Monitor (June 4, 2001), p 9.
What is going to happen to 'white' values?" Dale Hurd repeatedly asked while interviewing me for a TV program for the Christian Broadcasting Network.

Another Side of Racial Profiling

May 21, 2001

“Another Side of Racial Profiling” USA Today (May 21, 2001), p 15A.
I can just imagine the conversation in George W. Bush's inner circle: We must make inroads into the Democratic Party's major bases, especially African-Americans, who voted against us 9-1 in the presidential elections.

On Social and Moral Revival

May 14, 2001

Assuming that American society (and to a lesser extent other Western societies) has experienced a breakdown of community, how may it be resurrected? Will it suffice to reweave the frayed social bonds, or is the recreation of a moral culture also essential?

The Communitarian Model

May 14, 2001

“The Communitarian Model.” Building a Healthy Culture: Strategies for an American Renaissance, (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co: Grand Rapids, MI, 2001), 246-259.

The Third Way to a Good Society

May 14, 2001

The Third Way debate has, so far, not been very successful. While governments across the world searchfor a new political synthesis, the theoretical debate has offered little to those interested in a new framework for progressive politics. This essay presents an account of what the Third Way really means, and roots it in a communitarian vision of the good society.

Communitarianism

May 13, 2001

Communitarianism is a social philosophy that maintains that societal formulations of the good are both needed and legitimate. Communitarianism is often contrasted with classical *liberalism, a philosophical position that holds each individual should formulate the good . Communitarians examines the ways shared conceptions of the good (values) are formed, transmitted, enforced and justified. Hence their interest in communities (and moral dialogues within them), historically transmitted values and mores, and the societal units that transmit and enforce values such the family, schools, and voluntary associations from social clubs to independent churches.

Is Bowling Together Sociologically Lite

May 13, 2001

Robert Putnam's new book raises crucial questions for the analysis of the social and moral future of American society. He demonstrates that the old, 1950s social fabric, and the white male dominated social bonds on which it was based, have largely frayed. Numerous kinds of civic engagement have declined, including participation in voluntary associations, public life, and religious activities. Putnam documents well that the anomie that followed this disengagement has had numerous ill effects on individuals and on society that are usually associated with the breakdown of social order, such as the increase in violent crime. The unavoidable question therefore is: What is going to fill the gnawing social vacuum? While he addresses this question largely in terms of a need to recreate social connectedness or community, it cannot be adequately answered, I shall argue, without examining the sources and content of a new shared moral culture.

Suffer the Children

May 13, 2001

Several leading civil libertarian groups and advocated (and libertarians) argue that minors of all ages are entitled to First Amendment rights. (To save breath, they are all referred to from here on as civil libertarians.) Reference is mainly not to "production" of speech but to "consumption," the unfettered access to cultural material.

To Diversity and Beyond

April 30, 2001

“To Diversity and Beyond” The Weekly Standard (April 30, 2001), p 19.
Even Americans who don't care squat about abstractions such as "race relations" might well be infuriated to learn that - under an order by the Clinton White House, which George W. Bush could yet rescind - the U.S Census is following a deep South tradition: Americans who check both "black" and "white" race boxes on their Census forms are to be counted as 100 percent black.

Are Liberal Scholars Acting Irresponsibly on Gun Control?

April 06, 2001

“Are Liberal Scholars Acting Irresponsibly on Gun Control?” The Chronicle of Higher Education (April 6, 2001), pp B14-15.
A recent court case now under appeal in the Fifth Circuit, United States v. Emerson, raises, once again, the question of whether Americans have a constitutionally protected right to own guns.