On Friday night, Fox News host Sean Hannity had a dramatic confrontation with Fr. Tom Euteneuer. (The video is at www.foxnews.com; it’s the one titled “Judgment Day for Sean.”) Euteneuer had written a column denouncing Hannity for endorsing contraception; on the Friday Fox broadcast, Euteneuer said the host was being “a heretic in public.” Hannity responded with “judge not lest you be judged,” and an attack on “the corruption in the Church” and “the sex scandal.” There’s much to be said about this. Hannity’s attacks on the Catholic Church are a cheap shot and not relevant to the issue of his dissent from a particular Catholic teaching. Amy Welborn is right to suggest that the Catholic League, which is hypersensitive to slights to Catholicism emanating from the left, should–in the interests of consistency and credibility–knock Hannity when he does the same thing from the right. But it would be a shame if this turned into a mere bash-Hannity festival. Because Hannity was on to something in his contention about judgmentalism, and this could be an important teaching moment on the issue. It’s a right-wing shibboleth that Jesus’ phrase “judge not lest ye be judged” should be ignored, because after all it’s only an excuse people use for not doing what we (the good people, the religious in-group) know to be the right thing. But Jesus was addressing a genuine religious problem, one that existed in first-century Judea just as it exists today. There is such a thing as pharisaism: the desire to substitute man-made righteousness for God’s righteousness, and to demean anyone who is outside the man-made in-group. Whether Fr. Euteneuer is pharisaical is something on which Sean Hannity and I might disagree–I think that, in general, Euteneuer is a good guy and that, in this particular confrontation, he transgressed the bounds of charity substantially less than Hannity did. But the good news is, the final determination on this will not rest with me or Sean, but with someone more merciful than either of us.
Yesterday, the Human Rights Foundation hosted an event they called “PutinCon” -- a conference devoted to the Russian “president,” Vladimir Putin: his rise and his deeds, both at home and abroad. Participating were both Russians and well-wishing foreigners. It was, above all, a day of truth-telling -- a ... Read More
The Republican primary in the Illinois gubernatorial race has largely been characterized by incumbent Bruce Rauner refusing to confront his challenger Jeanne Ives, including in public debates. The only time the two candidates faced off was in front of the Chicago Tribune editorial board in late January, during ... Read More
Last October, the U.S. House passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which prohibits abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy based on scientific evidence that fetuses can feel pain at this stage of development. The bill passed by a 237–189 vote; all but three Democratic representatives voted ... Read More
The Wall Street Journal has a story today about the ties between President Trump's trade adviser, Peter Navarro, and the biggest steel company in the U.S. -- Nucor Corp. It is particularly interesting in light of the stiff steel tariffs successfully pushed by Navarro, which he championed ever since he joined the ... Read More
One of the biggest intellectual jousting matches last year was between Duke history professor Nancy MacLean, who wrote a slimy, dishonest book about Nobel Prize–winning economist James Buchanan and the whole limited-government movement, and the many scholars who blasted holes in it. If it had been a boxing ... Read More
The Senate on Wednesday passed a bill that would roll back parts of Dodd-Frank. The vote was 67–31, with 17 members of the Democratic caucus breaking party lines. If the legislation passes the House and is signed, it will be the largest change to the controversial financial-reform package since it became law in ... Read More
At the height of the influx of refugees into Germany in 2015–17, there was little doubt that mixed among the worthy cases were economic migrants taking advantage of the chaos to seek their fortunes in Europe. Perhaps out of instinctive pro-immigrant sentiment, Germany’s Left obscured the difference. Its ... Read More