I just watched this remarkable tribute to Christopher Hitchens by Fr. Robert Barron, and it confirms to me yet again that Kathryn Lopez is 100 percent correct about Father Barron: He is the most impressive Catholic apologist of our time. Too many Catholic apologists — and the exact same goes for Protestant apologists, and atheist apologists, and what-have-you apologists; it’s the occupational hazard in that line of work — come across as smug tribalists sneering at the lesser people not fortunate enough to be within their circle. Watch this video of Father Barron on Creative Minority Report and you will see why he is so good at apologetics: He is clearly someone who is catholic in the true lower-case-c sense, and infused with love for a (in this instance, one particular) fellow man. I had my problems with Christopher Hitchens — who didn’t? — and Barron mentions some of these issues in the video. But he puts those disagreements in a very realistic context, in what I think is an attempt to see our brother Christopher with God’s eyes. That is what we are called to do even with our outright enemies, never mind people who might say an unkind word about (or to) us now and again. Now there’s a resolution for the New Year: Try to be as charitable with people who disagree with me as Father Barron is in his comments on Hitchens. (One hell of a challenge; but then, so, of course, is Christianity. In fact, it’s the same challenge.) If any e-mailer or comboxer views this as an invitation to put my resolution to the test, let me say, preemptively, to that person: Have a blessed and happy New Year!
American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
The Russians are engaged in “information warfare” against the United States. That was the big soundbite at Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s press conference Friday afternoon, announcing Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s election-meddling indictment against 13 Russians and three Russian ... Read More
It has become more urgent to ask: Why is there a special counsel in the Russia investigation? At this point, that question should be put to the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel — in the federal government, it’s the lawyers’ lawyer. To get down to brass tacks: May the president of the United ... Read More
To understand the American gun-control debate, you have to understand the fundamentally different starting positions of the two sides. Among conservatives, there is the broad belief that the right to own a weapon for self-defense is every bit as inherent and unalienable as the right to speak freely or practice ... Read More
The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More