Posted by God's Politics Editor 17 hours 56 min ago
1. Everything You Need to Know About Obama’s Executive ActionThinkProgress breaks down the immigration relief announced by the president Thursday night. Who gets relief and who is left out? What about border security? Your questions answered.2. Give Thanks; Celebrate Hope!Offer your thanks and stand behind the new immigration relief measures!3. The United States of ThanksgivingLooking for some great recipes for unique holiday cooking? “We’ve scoured the nation for recipes that evoke each of the 50 states (and D.C. and Puerto Rico). [But not Guam!] These are our picks for the feast. Dig in, then tell us yours."4. WATCH Toni Morrison Completely Schools Stephen Colbert on RacismThe Pulitzer Prize, Nobel Prize, and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient sits down with Colbert to discuss her works. “Racism is … a social construct. And it has benefits. … But race can only be defined as a human being.”5. Thai Protestors Detained After Using ‘Hunger Games’ Salute “The salute, which in the movies is a daring act of silent rebellion, began to appear here in the weeks after the May 22 coup. The authorities warned that anyone raising it in public could be subject to arrest.”6. A New Image of Black Fatherhood [PHOTOS]These photos capture "ordinary moments that crush white media narratives and stereotypes about black fathers."7. The Cosby ShowTa-Nehisi Coates writes for The Atlantic about his experience covering Bill Cosby in 2006-2007 as he was making the speaking rounds talking about the supposed decline of morality in black communities. At the time, he knew about 13 rape accusations but declined to report on them. Here, he explains what he would have done differently. 8. The False Gospel of Gender Binaries"Jesus didn't die on the cross to preserve gender complementarity. Jesus didn't die on the cross to ensure that little girls wear pink and little boys wear blue. Jesus lived, taught, died, and rose again to start a new family in which Jew and gentile, slave and free, male and female are all part of one holy Body."9. NTSB Rules that FAA Has Authority to Regulate Drones‘‘It’s a huge win for the FAA, and signals it’s not going to be the Wild West for drones, but a careful, orderly, safe introduction of unmanned aircraft systems into the national airspace system.’’10. Filmmaking a Cultural Battlefield in IranA fascinating look inside the politics an propaganda of film in Iran: “As reformists assert their cultural influence on screen and in the arts, conservatives in Iran are looking to a new set of movies and filmmakers to help suppress reformists and eliminate Western influence in Iranian society.”
Posted by God's Politics Editor 1 day 8 hours ago
Editor's Note: Thursday evening, President Barack Obama announced he is taking action to reform pieces of our broken immigration system. See Sojourners President Jim Wallis' recap here. Below are President Obama's remarks as prepared for delivery. My fellow Americans, tonight, I’d like to talk with you about immigration.For more than 200 years, our tradition of welcoming immigrants from around the world has given us a tremendous advantage over other nations. It’s kept us youthful, dynamic, and entrepreneurial. It has shaped our character as a people with limitless possibilities – people not trapped by our past, but able to remake ourselves as we choose.But today, our immigration system is broken, and everybody knows it.Families who enter our country the right way and play by the rules watch others flout the rules. Business owners who offer their workers good wages and benefits see the competition exploit undocumented immigrants by paying them far less. All of us take offense to anyone who reaps the rewards of living in America without taking on the responsibilities of living in America. And undocumented immigrants who desperately want to embrace those responsibilities see little option but to remain in the shadows, or risk their families being torn apart.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 1 day 17 hours ago
Yesterday, President Obama released a short video providing more information on a much-anticipated executive action announcement on immigration policy. While the details remain unclear on how many of the 11 million undocumented and aspiring Americans will be covered, relief is rumored to the following: Temporary legal protection for undocumented parents of children who are legal U.S. citizens.Temporary legal protection for undocumented immigrants with a longstanding presence in the United States.Extension of the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.The president will address the nation tonight at 8 p.m. ET. Watch the speech live here.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 1 day 19 hours ago
Early Thursday morning a gunman opened fire in a library at Florida State University, wounding three students before being fatally shot by police officers. Wielding a handgun, the shooter entered the library and forced hundreds of students studying for exams to flee or take cover behind bookshelves. NBC News reports:FSU Police Department Chief David Perry said the library was “packed with students studying for final exams” and estimated that there were 300 to 400 people in the building. One group of students sought refuge behind rows of bookshelves. “Everyone started running to one side of the library, then to the back,” one 20-year-old communications student who asked not to be identified told NBC News. “People were saying, ‘Gun! There’s a shooter! Go! Go! Go!’" She said her group hid among bookcases for what she said felt like 20 minutes. Once given the all-clear, the group was escorted to a campus building next door where they stayed until 4 a.m.Although the identity of the shooter is unknown, police officers believe he was acting alone and that there is no further threat to students at FSU.WATCH the police report:
Posted by God's Politics Editor 2 days 18 hours ago
As the nation continues to wait for the grand jury’s decision whether or not to indict Darren Wilson for the killing of Mike Brown, one artist has connected the violent police acts in Ferguson to a broader narrative of state-sanctioned violence.Molly Crabapple, known for her artistic contributions to Occupy Wall Street, combines the fast-paced style of dry-erase animation with colorful watercolor illustrations in her new video, ‘How Ferguson showed us the truth about police.’WATCH:
Posted by God's Politics Editor 4 days 12 hours ago
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon signed an executive action this afternoon declaring a state of emergency in Missouri and activating the National Guard to respond to “any period of unrest that might occur following the grand jury’s decision concerning the investigation into the death of Michael Brown.”
Posted by God's Politics Editor 1 week 14 hours ago
1. Interstellar Isn't About Religion (and Also It Is Totally About Religion)"While the film has a marked admiration for science—it is science, in the end, that helps humanity to rescue itself—it has just as much respect for wonder and awe and what you might call, in the broadest and perhaps even the narrowest sense, faith."2. Drones Now Patrol Half of U.S.-Mexico BorderIn an era of increased security but finite resources, the U.S. government has dispatched Predator Bs to sweep remote areas and detect people (or cows, it seems) entering the country.3. Why John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight Is Better Than The Daily Show and Colbert Where Stewart and Colbert simply reaffirm shared values, "Oliver’s brand of journalism (which is, of course, couched as cheerful Sunday-night entertainment) often has an actual, demonstrable impact on public consciousness.”4. The Most Heartbreaking Place in America Is Called ‘Friendship Park’ThinkProgress’ Jack Jenkins and Esther Boyd traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border to chronicle the struggles of immigrant life. In this first piece, they tell the story of immigrants whose only glimpse of family is through an 18-foot steel fence between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 2 weeks 13 hours ago
1. GoldieBlox Releases Action Figure for Girls“Fashion dolls teach girls to value beauty over brains. One is sold every 3 seconds.” That’s how the ad releasing a new action figure for girls opens. Looks like Barbie and Bratz dolls have some competition.2. On the 25th Anniversary, Stunning Before and After Photos of the Fall of the Berlin WallSunday marks the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. These photographs capture how life has changed in the past quarter century.3. Gerrymandering Rigged the 2014 Election“There are a lot of structural issues that influence congressional elections, from voter ID requirements to early voting access. But what does it matter if you’ve been packed into a district in which your vote can’t change the composition of Congress?”4. Victoria’s Secret Got the Memo, Changed ‘Perfect Body’ CampaignThis isn’t the first time Victoria’s Secret got a marketing campaign tagline a little twisted (ahem, remember ‘Bright Young Things?’) But this time, they seem to have gotten the message — from the nearly 30,000 people who signed an online petition or tweeted #iamperfect to the lingerie brand.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 4 weeks 15 hours ago
1. Black People Riot Over Injustice; White People Riot Over Pumpkins and FootballTitle says it all.2. Where Did Ottawa Shooter Get His Gun? Michael Zehaf-Bibeau was under criminal prohibition from obtaining firearms because of past convictions. A helpful glimpse into Canada’s system of gun rules. 3. The Paradox of the Christian CEOFr. James Martin expounds on Catholic social teaching to address the difficult question: “The question I would ask Christian CEOs is blunt: What do you want to say to Jesus when you reach the gates of heaven? That you took as much as you could, or as much as the market would bear, because the board okay’d it? Or that you accepted what you thought was just,and understood the needs of your fellow men and women, who may have worked even harder than you?4. A Sandy Hook Father’s PleaMark Barden lost a child in the Sandy Hook massacre. In this moving testimony, he offers a plea that we all do what we can to stop the next school shooting before it happens.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 5 weeks 15 hours ago
1. Race and America’s Gun Culture"Whites walking down Main Street with an AK-47 are defenders of American values; a black man doing the same thing is Public Enemy No. 1."2. Keeping the Faith: How Childhood Influences ChurchgoingFrom college education to birth order, this article offers all the latest stats on American religiosity.3. WATCH: British Nurse Who Survived Ebola Will Return to Africa Because ‘There’s Still A Lot of Work to Do’William Pooley is a volunteer nurse who contracted the disease in Sierra Leone. He plans to return.4. Dear White People: Art Imitating Life’s Racism"Simien told The Root he’s not trying to embarrass but instead is trying to open a dialogue through his humor. He wants white filmgoers to know, ‘It’s not an hour-and-a-half indictment of your people.’ Instead it could be taken as a 108-minute indictment of all people."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 6 weeks 13 hours ago
1. A Fitting Nobel for Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi“The Nobel committee has given an award to a seventeen-year-old, the youngest Peace Prize laureate ever. In one way, that is an act of faith about what and who Malala Yousafzai will become—not only about who she has been.”2. Lecrae: 'Christians Have Prostituted Art to Give Answers'"Christians have really used and almost in some senses prostituted art in order to give answers instead of telling great stories and raising great questions," says the wildly successful rapper.3. WATCH: Columbus Day Under AttackThe Seattle City Council voted to replace Columbus Day with ''Indigenous Peoples Day." Leave it to Stephen Colbert to defend this "traditional holiday."4. Islam and the Mother Lode of Bad Ideas: The Bill Maher, Sam Harris, and Ben Affleck DebateSam Harris says, "Islam is the mother lode of bad ideas." But isn''t saying this, in fact, scapegoating Islam and Muslims?
Posted by God's Politics Editor 6 weeks 4 days ago
On Monday, the Supreme Court declined to hear several cases where federal appeals courts upheld the Constitutional rights of same-sex couples to marry, causing a seismic, if quiet, shift in several states' debates over same-sex marriage. The decision to not hear cases leaves intact lower appeals rulings that had overturned same-sex marriage bans. For five states and potentially six more, this guarantees the legal right for same-sex couples to marry.USA Today reports:The unexpected decision by the justices, announced without further explanation, immediately affects five states in which federal appeals courts had struck down bans against gay marriage: Virginia, Indiana, Wisconsin, Oklahoma and Utah.It also will bring along six other states located in the judicial circuits overseen by those appellate courts: North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia, Colorado, Kansas and Wyoming. Lower court judges in those states must abide by their appeals court rulings.Read more here.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 7 weeks 13 hours ago
1. The Strange Nostalgia of ‘Left Behind’The rapture movie (out in theaters today) is—to borrow a phrase—neither hot nor cold. So why the re-make? We take a crack at answering.2. Lipstick and Seminary“During seminary, I paid close attention to ways men acted in and outside the classroom. Playing by their rules helped me fit in…I guarded what I considered feminine-seeming parts of my personality — creativity, emotion, and relational ways of perceiving and acting. I got A’s, but my soul was wilting.”3. WATCH: A Million Ways to Die in the U.S.Jon Stewart puts concerns over ISIS and Ebola in perspective. “The American government has a sacred obligation to do whatever it takes to save American lives…unless it’s stopping the things that are actually killing Americans.”
Posted by God's Politics Editor 7 weeks 13 hours ago
1. The Strange Nostalgia of ‘Left Behind’The rapture movie (out in theaters today) is—to borrow a phrase—neither hot nor cold. So why the re-make? We take a crack at answering.2. Lipstick and Seminary“During seminary, I paid close attention to ways men acted in and outside the classroom. Playing by their rules helped me fit in…I guarded what I considered feminine-seeming parts of my personality — creativity, emotion, and relational ways of perceiving and acting. I got A’s, but my soul was wilting.”3. WATCH: A Million Ways to Die in the U.S.Jon Stewart puts concerns over ISIS and Ebola in perspective. “The American government has a sacred obligation to do whatever it takes to save American lives…unless it’s stopping the things that are actually killing Americans.”4. The Meditations of Europe’s Last Brewmaster NunSays Sister Doris: “As Saint Benedict wrote, ‘in all things God may be glorified,’ and that is also true of beer.” Say we: "Amen."
Americans Divided on Religious Liberty: The Freedom to Practice My Religion or the Freedom to Avoid Yours
Posted by God's Politics Editor 8 weeks 2 days ago
When it comes to concerns over religious liberty, Americans are divided as to which is in more imminent danger: the ability to practice one’s religion without government inference, or the consequences to freedom of others enforcing their own religious beliefs on others. According to the 2014 American Values Survey, released Tuesday from the Public Religion Research Institute, nearly half of Americans (46 percent) say they are more concerned about religious groups trying to pass laws that force their beliefs on others. An equal number (46) say they are more concerned about the government interfering with the ability of people to freely practice their religion.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 9 weeks 14 hours ago
1. In Record Turnout, Demographics Shape Scotland's Emphatic No VoteNational Geographic has a recap (and stunning photos) of yesterday's vote: "Tomorrow a new campaign—for reconciliation—will begin. The referendum opened up deep, sometimes venomous, class and regional divisions."2. WATCH: It’s On Us Today, the White House announced its nationwide public service campaign to prevent and respond to sexual assault on campuses. Watch and share.3. Together We Make Football“Football encourages some deep tremor of romance about what it means to be a man. ...Save for the military — with which it has a symbiotic relationship — the NFL is the biggest and strongest exponent of American masculinity. And integral to that notion of American masculinity is violence.”4. Confessions of a Military Skeptic"Do we believe that everything will be fine after we kill the last Islamic State militant?" Thomas Reese, on being neither military hawk nor pacifist in regards to ISIS, for National Catholic Reporter.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 10 weeks 1 day ago
The following are President Barack Obama's remarks, as prepared for delivery, on the threat of the ISIL, delivered on Wednesday evening.My fellow Americans – tonight, I want to speak to you about what the United States will do with our friends and allies to degrade and ultimately destroy the terrorist group known as ISIL.As Commander-in-Chief, my highest priority is the security of the American people. Over the last several years, we have consistently taken the fight to terrorists who threaten our country. We took out Osama bin Laden and much of al Qaeda’s leadership in Afghanistan and Pakistan. We’ve targeted al Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen, and recently eliminated the top commander of its affiliate in Somalia. We’ve done so while bringing more than 140,000 American troops home from Iraq, and drawing down our forces in Afghanistan, where our combat mission will end later this year. Thanks to our military and counterterrorism professionals, America is safer.Still, we continue to face a terrorist threat. We cannot erase every trace of evil from the world, and small groups of killers have the capacity to do great harm. That was the case before 9/11, and that remains true today. That’s why we must remain vigilant as threats emerge. At this moment, the greatest threats come from the Middle East and North Africa, where radical groups exploit grievances for their own gain. And one of those groups is ISIL – which calls itself the “Islamic State.”
Posted by God's Politics Editor 11 weeks 14 hours ago
1. Almost Like the BluesCanadian folk bard Leonard Cohen reads lyrics from one of his latest songs — a gentle, melancholy reflection on life and hope.2. How Back-to-School Shopping Reinforces Gender Norms — and How to Fight BackFor those of us with children heading to, or back to, school — one parent attempts to buck the gendered school-accessories market. 3. The Osteen Predicament — Mere Happiness Cannot Bear the Weight of the Gospel"If our message cannot be preached with credibility in Mosul, it should not be preached in Houston." 'Nuff said.4. Steven Sotloff Hid His Jewish Faith from ISIS Captors"The secrets that couldn’t be known about beheaded journalist Steven Sotloff during his captivity were revealed in detail Wednesday: The 31-year-old was Jewish, had dual U.S.-Israeli citizenship and apparently maintained his Jewish ritual life while being held by ISIS."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 12 weeks 16 hours ago
1. Photo Essay: On the Ground in Israel and GazaTwo photographers spent the beginning of August chronicling the latest outbreak of violence for New York Times Magazine. The images tell the story of war.2. WATCH: Jon Stewart Speaking Truth About Race"Do you not understand that life in this country is inherently different for white people and black people? … Race is there and it is a constant. You're tired of hearing about it? Imagine how ****ing exhausting it is living it."3. The Lie"This spiritual lie has shaped our public life since the founding of our nation. We have yet to face it down, name it, and repent." Sojourners' Lisa Sharon Harper writes a guest column for Ed Stetzer's new series: "It's Time to Listen," which lifts up the voices of African-American evangelicals in light of the Michael Brown tragedy. 4. MAP: Where Do the World Religions Live? Pew Research Center maps where the followers of major religions live. Fact: 1 country is home to 62 percent of unaffiliated people (and contains 19 percent of the world's total population). Guess that country.5. That Time We Walked Out of a Church Service"When I walked out of the church, I made a choice. I chose light over darkness. I chose truth over lies. I chose to honor my identity as beloved Kingdom woman over lukewarm, American believer."6. WATCH: Kirk Cameron's Christian Nation Doesn't ExistWatch the trailer to Kirk Cameron's latest film in which he apparently fill-on saves Christmas from those heathens bearing tidings of "Happy Holidays." Yes, it's a real thing.7. MAP: How ISIS Spread Through Syria and IraqWhile the spread of ISIS seemed to surprise many in America, "the victories achieved in the past few weeks were built on months of maneuvering along the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, which define a region known as the cradle of civilization." The map visualizes that maneuvering. 8. When the Holy Spirit Is Our Midwife"… we are enlarged in the waiting; in every agonizing moment of waiting for the promise to be delivered, we are being expanded and transformed. And so we yell and fight through the pain because the Spirit in us, She’s also a warrior and She’s making us fierce, She’s making us brave."9. Everyday Sexism in 9 Illustrations"A new book from Taschen titled Man Meets Woman, features simple green and pink pictograms by Beijing-born, Berlin-based designer Yang Liu that examine modern gender roles. The 38-year-old uses minimalist imagery to illustrate a complex culture of gender stereotyping."10. Treaty-ish: Obama's Proposed Climate Change Agreement Would Be Good for the Planet"It may turn out that President Obama has simply outmaneuvered Republicans in Congress by entering an agreement that lacks the power of a treaty, but causes other countries to change their behavior—resulting in new forms of international cooperation that subsequent presidents and even Congresses will respect."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 12 weeks 3 days ago
Today, August 26, is Women's Equality Day. The date was selected to commemorate the 1920 passage of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, granting women the right to vote. In honor of such a day as this, we decided it’d be fitting to highlight the voices of women by sharing our top five posts (by number of page views) authored by women from the past year. A New Normal: Ten Things I've Learned About Trauma, by Catherine Woodiwiss (Sojourners Associate Web Editor)Not As Helpless As We Think: 3 Ways to Stand In Solidarity With Ferguson, by Rachel Held EvansHow Not to Raise a Daughter, by Sandi Villarreal (Sojourners Web Editor and Chief Digital Officer)World Vision Reverses Decision on Same-Sex Marriage, Calls It 'A Mistake,' by Sarah Pulliam BaileyHow I Kissed Evangelizing Goodbye, by Cindy BrandtAnd while we’ve come a long way over the past 94 years, we also recognize there is still much to be done. So stay tuned to our Women and Girls Leading through Faith and Justice Initiative. We hope to have some exciting updates to share soon (including a new hire — you can still apply for our Women and Girls Campaign Associate position here)!
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 4 days ago
Editor's Note: Violence, anger, and confusion continues in Ferguson, Mo. Former Sojourners intern and current Digital and Creative Director for PICO Heather Wilson is reporting from the scene and shared her eyewitness account with Sojourners and others late Sunday night. We share it here as an important perspective in the ongoing unrest and confusion. Please keep the safety and wellbeing of all people in Ferguson in your prayers."Captain Johnson and the police force in Ferguson IS LYING, AND I AM BEARING WITNESS.Two hours before curfew, I was photographing at the front of a peaceful march of all generations, calling for justice and peace in Ferguson. It was controlled and respectful—when someone stepped out the traffic lane they were marching in, they were directed back.Without provocation, armored cars rolled up on us...yelled unintelligibly for 60 seconds and launched tear gas at us without warning. Women...children...even a woman in a wheelchair.Captain Johnson is saying that bottles and Molotov cocktails were thrown at the front line. TONIGHT I CAN TESTIFY THAT THIS IS UNTRUE."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 14 hours ago
1. Ferguson, Mo. Police Chief Releases Name of Officer Who Shot, Killed Michael Brown It's been almost a week since the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson. This morning, Darren Wilson, a six-year member of the department, was named as the shooter in the incident. Watch the police chief's statement at the link.2. Matt Walsh, Robin Williams, and How Ignorance Can Lead to Unkindness Matt Walsh recently wrote a piece about suicide and depression that represents a more systemic misunderstanding of mental illness in certain faith circles. Naked Pastor writer and artist David Hayward responds in this important piece: "I would like to help Matt Walsh and his fans understand depression, suicide, and humans."3. Why Joseph Gordon-Levitt Considers Himself a Male Feminist (also known as a feminist) "…If you look at history, women are an oppressed category of people. There’s a long, long history of women suffering abuse, injustice, and not having the same opportunities as men, and I think that’s been very detrimental to the human race as a whole."4. How Did America's Police Get So Militarized? As the photos continue to pour out of Ferguson, Mo. of St. Louis County police dressed in riot gear and driving IED-resistant vehicles down suburban, middle-America streets, Mother Jonestakes us through the history of this now-extreme militarization of local police forces.5. Millennials and the Myth of a Post-Racial Generation "When police shoot down an 18-year old black teen in St Louis; when toxic power plants and incinerators are placed near communities of color; when Asian Americans are still a socially acceptable butt of racial jokes; when our nation’s capital continues to use a racial slur for its football team name, racism isn’t going anywhere anytime soon."6. World's Top Muslim Leaders Condemn Attacks on Iraqi Christians "Their remarks come at a time when Christian leaders in Iraq have called on Muslim leaders worldwide to denounce the anti-Christian violence in the country. In the past decade, the majority of Iraqi Christians have either fled the country or taken refuge in the autonomous region of Kurdistan."7. Asylum Politics: Why are dozens of Sikh refugees being detained in an El Paso immigration facility, months after they could have been paroled? From Texas Monthly: "When most people think of immigration across the Mexico-U.S. border, they think of impoverished Mexicans looking for work. But more than a third of the 414,397 people who were apprehended at the southwestern border of the United States last year were from other countries, and that proportion continues to increase as the number of Mexican immigrants falls dramatically."8. In Which, Depression Is NOT Your Fault "Since the tragic death of Robin Williams, I have seen some terrible, misinformed, and abusive bullsh*t online about depression and mental illness. This normally wouldn’t be enough to make me type as passionately as I am right now but this stuff is coming from a few vocal and influential Christians. … Heaping condemnation and guilt and fear on the heads of the suffering is akin to tying a millstone around someone’s neck. This is a heinous and evil thing to do."9. Trapped in Texas: Tens of Thousands of Immigrants Are Stuck in the Borderlands "We're not Mexico, and we're not the United States. We're somewhere in between." Revealing report from Public Radio International. 10. Humans of New York Goes International Are you really NOT one of the 9 million people following HONY? It's time to get on board, as Brandon is on World Tour (was just in Iraq, now in Jordan), photographing and interviewing whomever he comes in contact with. Storytelling at its finest.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 3 days ago
We lost a funny man on Monday to a sad and persistent disease. Robin Williams passed away last night of an apparent suicide.In memory of Williams, we've compiled a few of our favorite scenes.1. AladdinWilliams' performance as the lovable Genie: "Ten thousand years will give you such a crick in the neck!"
Posted by God's Politics Editor 15 weeks 15 hours ago
1. U.S Considers Air Strikes and Air Drops to Help Iraqis Trapped on Mountain by ISIS"The move comes as Qaraqosh, Iraq's largest Christian city, was all but abandoned as the jihadist group Islamic State (Isis) advanced through minority communities in the country's north-west and towards the Kurdish stronghold of Irbil."2. Inclusive Language for God Does Note Equal HeresyRachel Marie Stone brings it on her Religion News Service blog, calling out the criticism of Gungor for supposed 'drift from biblical orthodoxy' for 'experiments with female metaphors for God' among other 'heresies.'3. What Is Really Happening in Iraq? "In June, ISIS overran the northern capital of Mosul and began a violent march southward, proclaiming the imminent destruction of Kerbala, Najaf, and Baghdad — strongholds of Shi’a religious and political power. Sectarianism reignited and militias re-armed. ISIS was a Sunni problem and the Shi’a were either fleeing or beating their chests in fear. So, these few weeks later, with Christians and others being marked and driven from their homes, a Muslim movement that says, 'We are all Christians,' is subversive in the most daring of ways."4. Dear Fashion Industry, Please Stop Glamorizing RapeFashion is a powerful medium and it can have a big influence in a vast country like India—and the world over. The more we depict violence against women in beautiful, glamorous ways, the more we normalize this violence.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 16 weeks 15 hours ago
1. Visualization: Casualities in the Israel-Palestine ConflictWashington Post is keeping a regularly updated tally of the deaths in the current conflict. The stunning visualization paints a grim picture.2. I Need Feminism Because…A Tumblr using the hashtag #WomenAgainstFeminism made the Internet rounds last week. Sojourners' writer Catherine Woodiwiss offers her take: "In a perfect world, women can choose to be whomever they want. But there is not yet a country on earth in which that is actually true. That is why we need feminism."3. Religious Conservatives Embrace Pollution FightFrom The New York Times:"This week’s hearings on the new E.P.A. rule gave [conservatives] an opportunity to make their argument that climate change hurts the world’s poor through natural disasters, droughts and rising sea levels, and that it is part of their faith to protect the planet."4. Wife Beating Gets a Standing Ovation in Baltimore"… the sheer gall it takes to celebrate fans’ adoration of a man who beat his fiancee and mostly got away with it indicates the larger problem: The NFL is too big to fail."5. The New Face of HungerOne-sixth of Americans don't have enough food to eat. This powerful photo essay chronicles the stories in three parts of the country. Click through the gallery for the moving images.6. New Baby Doll Is Anatomically Correct, And Moms Are Freaking Out "An outraged mom recently shared a photo of an anatomically correct baby doll on Facebook. I don't get it. When did it become taboo to talk about body parts with our kids?"7. WATCH: What Would Happen if People in Poverty Received Tabloid Treatment?A new campaign from a Canada-based service organization puts real people struggling with poverty in the place of the Kim Kardashians of the gossip-mag world. Check out the video and magazine mock-ups.8. What's the Story of Your First Days in America?From visiting McDonald's to questioning Southern hospitality, the fascinating series First Days documents immigrants' transition into the U.S.9. Are You Too Proud of Your 'Natural' Lifestyle?"While I certainly sympathize with concerns over chemicals and additives in our food, with the degradation of the environment, with the overprescribing of antibiotics and the soaring cesarean section rates, I’m keenly aware that many of the advances now freely scorned by those proudly adhering to ‘natural’ lifestyles are the very thing that make a flourishing, healthy life possible for so many people."10. A Few Times Vandalism Did the World Some GoodWhile we're totally not advocating vandalism … the " … or Love the Neighbor as Thyself" response was pretty great. See all of these heroes-of-the-questionably-legal sort at the link.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 18 weeks 14 hours ago
1. Germany 'May Revert to Typewriters' to Counter Hi-tech EspionageGerman politicians are considering a return to using manual typewriters for sensitive documents in the wake of the US surveillance scandal. Yes, really.2. World Cup Winners Donate Their Prize MoneySome German soccer players who took gold on Sunday—and fellow runner-ups from Argentina—both gave away portions of their earnings to charity, earning gold stars for empathy to go along with their trophy.3. The Crisis in Israel-PalestineVox is keeping an up-to-date StoryStream on the developing crisis in Israel-Palestine. While world leaders call for peace, we pray.4. Leading AIDS Researchers Among Those Killed in Malaysian Airlines CrashMalaysian Airlines flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine yesterday. Evidence now suggests that more than one-third of the passengers were headed to an international health conference, including leading AIDS researchers.5. Neil Whosis? What You Don't Know About The 1969 Moon LandingThe names Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were household names in 1969. But they were all but forgotten by 1970. How did the astronauts to land on the moon pass into obscurity, and why are their names famous again now?6. Meet The Former Call Girl Saving Hookers For Jesus Annie Lobert, who spent 16 years as a prostitute in Las Vegas, is running a ministry that gets women out of the sex trade.7. Why You Should (Really, Seriously, Permanently) Stop Using Your Smartphone At DinnerA “new paper from Virginia Tech … confirms that the mere passive presence of cellphones cheapens in-person conversation, even when we’re not looking at them.”8. On Campus, Young Veterans Are Learning How to Be Millennials“That difference in background made Horton see all his classes in a whole other light. His friends read Moby Dick and saw the story of a whale hunt. Horton saw a man who lost his leg and set out for vengeance … he knew what it felt like to cling to the timbers with his shipmates, hurtling forward on a mission that threatened, at any moment, to kill them all.” 9. Watch 1,000 Balls Blast Through a Vacuum-Powered MazeInspired by hulking machines like CERN’s Large Hadron Collider, Roy’s contraption is a playful attempt to provide an artistic visualization to what happens in actual particle accelerators.10. Word Crimes“Everybody wise up!” Did you miss him? Weird Al returns with a pitch-perfect spoof on Robin Thicke’s infamous “Blurred Lines”—but this time, it’s about grammar. A catchy song on proper verb tense usage? Our web team says YES. #grammarnerds.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 19 weeks 15 hours ago
1. Afghan Taliban Bans Polio Vaccination Teams"Afghanistan is one of just three countries, along with Pakistan and Nigeria, where polio is still endemic. There has been a rise in cases this year, with seven reported so far compared with just three for the same period of 2013, according to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative."2. Communion in a Strip Club"I found myself in a strip club years ago. I carried a meal, and that was about all I carried. And a dancer asked me if I thought Jesus was insecure. … I quickly told her no. I told her that Jesus was entirely secure, hoping she wouldn’t try to take my Jesus away."3. This Is What Happened When I Drove My Mercedes to Pick Up Food StampsThe birth of twins and a job loss — stories like these illustrate how close so many people are to poverty: " … the judgment of the disadvantaged comes not just from conservative politicians and Internet trolls. It came from me, even as I was living it."4. Dismantling the White Male Industrial ComplexChristena Cleveland argues against the logic of the white man as the secret weapon in the fight against injustice. "… rather than contributing to the white male industrial complex and focusing most/all of our justice efforts on convincing and engaging white men, I propose a different strategy …"5. The Failure of Christian Witness in a World of Violence"Are we contributing to the epidemic of mockery and the glorification of violence in our world with what we share from our air-conditioned living rooms? If so, then the fact that we are privileged enough to have clean hands doesn’t make us any less guilty of the violence in our world than the suicide bombers and the drones."6. 'Life Ended There:' Rare Interviews With the Children of America's Border DisasterPOLITICO Magazine puts faces and stories to the border crisis in this must-read.7. How Hot Is It? Hot Enough to Ruin the Economy“The increased number of excessively hot days guaranteed to come with the changing climate has the potential to dramatically denigrate worker productivity, according to recent study. … Productivity figures to be the biggest economic hit, though energy costs will certainly give it a run for its, uh, money.”8. Cory Booker, Rand Paul Shine Light on Shadow Side of U.S. Justice SystemA new proposal pairs an unlikely duo to confront the injustice of mass incarceration. Read what brought the two together to find common ground.9. How It Feels to Love and Hate a Sex Offender"Most people do not understand how sex offenders function and therefore do not realize the depth of their damage. … In the healing process, I've learned that the families of sex offenders, the secondary victims, just like primary victims, must learn to do basic things even when all our beliefs and emotions scream it is not safe."10. This Land Is Their Land :The Braves, Chiefs, and Washington NFL Team All Play on Land Seized from American Indians“It is easy to assert that the name of your favorite team expresses solidarity with the survivors of the long, sordid history of Indian dispossession. But what if sports lore included the specifics of how the U.S. acquired the land below your team’s home field?”
Posted by God's Politics Editor 19 weeks 6 days ago
1. Five Takeaways From the Hobby Lobby CaseFive things to know about one of the biggest Supreme Court decisions of the year.2. Who’s Afraid of Soccer in America?The beautiful game captured the imagination of the United States as its national team advanced to the knockout rounds to fall valiantly at the hands — or feet, rather — of Belgium. And the numbers don't lie: soccer is taking off in America.3. Tim Howard: 'Nuff SaidSpeaking of the World Cup, goal keeper Tim Howard did the best he could to keep the U.S. in it. The shot-stopper has taken the Internet by storm, with #ThingsTimHowardCouldSave trending on Twitter, hilarious Tim Howard memes abounding, a petition to change the name of Washington National Airport (DCA) to "Tim Howard National Airport" going viral. The man even received a call from Obama himself.4. Here's How Vancouver Responded to London's 'Anti-Homeless Spikes'A Vancouver charity, RainCity Housing, is converting city benches into pop-up shelters for homeless people. And by giving homeless people in this rainy city some dry coverage and a place to rest, RainCity is putting London's anti-homeless spikes to shame. 5. 10,000 Christians Have Fled Northern Iraq Since the ISIS TakeoverAs many as 10,000 people have fled from predominantly Christian areas in northern Iraq, the U.N. warned late last week.6. In open primary Southern states, black voters flex new muscleAn unexpected group of voters charged in to save veteran Mississippi Senator Thad Cochran, a Republican, from losing a primary squeaker against a tea party challenger: African American Democrats.7. Plastic garbage on ocean's surface is vanishing. Where is it going?Large amounts of the plastic debris littering the ocean's surface seem to be disappearing. But scientists are at a loss to explain where it's going.8. Bathrobes And Baby Carriers: The Stuff Of Manliness?NPR's All Things Considered asks, "What Object Makes You Feel Manly?" One man gives an answer that steers away from masculine stereotypes.9. 3 Lessons from Wild Goose: Holy Rest, Holy Mischief, and Holy Reconciliation"This past week I was surrounded by an eclectic mix of barefoot wanderers, edgy thinkers, and hippie-hipsters at the Wild Goose festival. While none of these descriptors necessarily apply to me, I found myself quite at home at the Goose." 10. Astronaut Reid Wiseman Has an Out of This World Twitter FeedReid Wiseman is up in space taking insane photos — definitely worth following on Twitter.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 21 weeks 15 hours ago
1. WATCH: Powerful Ad Shows What A Little Girl Hears When You Tell Her She's Pretty“A new Verizon commercial cites a sad statistic by the National Science Foundation: 66 percent of 4th grade girls say they like science and math, but only 18 percent of all college engineering majors are female.”2.Sandy Hook Dad on What You Can Do Right Now to Help Prevent Violence “'Pick your eyes up from the sidewalk and look at people,' Mr. Barden pleaded, with tears in his eyes. Yes, we should call our representatives; yes, we should make our voices heard where laws are made. But we should also do what we can to foster empathy; to create a world where no one feels invisible and ignored — least of all those who disproportionately fall victim to our collective failure to care enough to act."3. Facebook VP: Stop Portraying Me as Mother-of-Four Who 'Wanted it All''"'When I got my post at Facebook it was all about how I was a mother-of-four who had 'won' the position, alongside pictures of my wedding,' she said, noting that the male executive hired at the same time came under no such scrutiny. Reports also said she insisted on working part-time, when in fact she was working a typical five-day week."4. FIFA Go Home: Inside Brazilians' Struggle to Challenge World Cup From Mashable: "Their goal isn't so much to change the current World Cup in any specific way; it's more to challenge — and, ideally, impact — the mainstream narrative surrounding the tournament, shifting its focus to the event's human costs and larger political context. To the billions spent on stadiums that won't be used again and the millions living in abject poverty."5. Ikea to Raise Its Average Minimum Hourly Wage to $10.76 "The happier the co-worker, the happier the customer and the better the overall shopping experience," said Ikea's acting U.S. president, Rob Olson. "We wanted to be less concerned about the competition and more concerned about offering our co-workers a better everyday life."6. The Decency of a NationA new index attempts to measure the 'goodness' of nations — based on the way they treat other nations, science and technology, culture, equality, etc. (Spoiler: guess who doesn't break the top 10.)7.WATCH: 'Columbusing': When White People Think They Discovered Something They Didn't "Macklemore Columbused same-sex marriage, just like Gwyneth Paltrow Columbused Eastern medicine."8.Use of Drones for Killings Risks a War Without End A bipartisan panel concluded that the use of armed drones "sets a dangerous precedent for lethal operations that other countries might adopt in the future," according to the New York Times.9. Detroit Activists Call for UN Help as City Shuts Off Water for Thousands “Detroit has too much of some things – stray dogs, abandoned houses – and not enough of others, such as residents who pay their water bills. The latest sign of Detroit’s decline came from the city’s water department, when it said in March it would begin shutting off water for up to 3,000 homes and businesses a week in an attempt to stop the utility from sliding even further into debt.”10. PHOTOS: Inside a Detention Center for Migrant Children The Customs and Border Patrol is overwhelmed by a flood of minors entering the U.S. from Central America.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 21 weeks 15 hours ago
1. WATCH LIVE: The Summit: World Change Through Faith & JusticeToday is the last day of The Summit. Live stream Summit Sessions Unlocking Solutions to Disarm Injustice: Mass Incarceration & Gun Violence at 1 p.m. EDT and The Final Push: The Immigration Reform Debateat 7 p.m. EDT. 2. The Devastating Issue Pastors Aren't DiscussingA groundbreaking new poll shows the large discrepancy between pastors' belief that domestic and sexual violence is a problem in their local communities and their belief that it is a problem in their congregations.3. To Publish a PredatorChristianity Today's Leadership Journal recently published a first-hand narrative from a pastor who entered into a sexual relationship with a minor — framed around the concept of sin. The post spurred a Twitter firestorm using the hashtag #TakeDownThatPost. They did, and CT''s her.meneutics blog responds. 4. The Number of People Displaced by Violent Conflict at the End of 2013 Exceeded 51 Million"The number of people displaced by violent conflict hit the highest level since World War II at the end of 2013, the head of the United Nations refugee agency, António Guterres, said in a report released on Friday, warning that “peace is dangerously in deficit.”5. Presbyterians in U.S. to Allow Gay Marriage CeremoniesThe PC(USA) voted at its Detroit gathering this week to allow clergy to perform same-sex marriages wherever they are legal. 6. Russell Moore Weighs in on Hobby Lobby's China DealingsJonathan Merritt says Hobby Lobby cannot be considered a Christian business because of the ethical implications in its business dealings with China. "Because they’ve chosen to label their business as “Christian,” I think it is wholly fair to raise this issue." In his Religion News Service blog, he gives Russell Moore, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, a chance to respond.7. The Places They'll Go: Nuns Working on the Margins"If you happen upon a forgotten corner of desperate poverty or a neglected collection of humanity, chances are good that a religious woman has arrived before you."8. Rape Victims Say Bob Jones University Told Them To RepentIn this piece for Al Jazeera America, women survivors of rape while attending BJU during the course of three different decades share their stories. "… most damaging was how, through the language of Scripture, victims say they were told that their sins had brought on their rapes, that their trauma meant they were fighting God and that healing came from forgiving their rapists." 9. And watch the related three-part series: How the 'fortress of faith' handles rape.10. How Cities Use Design to Drive Homeless People Away"It has been encouraging to see the outrage over the London spikes. But the spikes that caused the uproar are by no means the only form of homeless-deterrent technology; they are simply the most conspicuous. Will public concern over the spikes extend to other less obvious instances of anti-homeless design? Perhaps the first step lies in recognizing the political character of the devices all around us."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 21 weeks 16 hours ago
1. In Extremists' Iraq Rise, America's Legacy "First Falluja, then Mosul, and now the oil-refinery town of Bayji. The rapid advance of Al Qaeda-inspired militants across the Sunni heartland of northern and western Iraq has been stunning and relentless — and utterly predictable. Here’s a forecast: the bad news is just beginning." 2. Obama Says He Will Decide on Military Force for Iraq in 'Days Ahead' "This poses a danger to Iraq and its people and, given the nature of these terrorists, it could pose a threat eventually to American interests as well," Mr. Obama said of the offensive now threatening Baghdad. "We will not be sending U.S. troops back into combat in Iraq, but I have asked my national security team to prepare a range of other options."3. Ruby Dee, Actress and Civil Rights Activist, Dies at 91 "Over the course of Ms. Dee’s career, the lives of American blacks, both extraordinary and ordinary, belatedly emerged as rich subject matter for mainstream theater productions and films, and black performers went from being consigned to marginal and often belittling roles to starring in Hollywood mega-hits. … But Ms. Dee not only took part in that evolution; through her visibility in a wide range of projects, from classics onstage to contemporary film dramas to television soap operas, she also helped bring it about." 4. 5 Problems with Throwing Immigrants in Separate, Private Prisons From Vox, a breakdown of just one of the many problems with the current immigration system: "These facilities only house non-citizens, most of whom will be deported after their terms are completed — meaning the federal government is willing to set lower standards for their treatment in some respects than they do for other inmates." 5. WATCH: High School Boys Prove Feminism Is For Everyone "High school teacher Ileana Jimenez, who clearly deserves some sort of award, recorded seven of her students sharing their thoughts on feminism. And they are so, so refreshing you want to reach through the screen and hug those young dudes." 6. It's Really Hard to Be a Good Guy With a Gun "The universe of scenarios in which carrying a gun seems prudent or useful just keeps shrinking and shrinking, even as the legal freedom to wield personal firepower keeps expanding. The NRA has recalibrated its message for the 21st century: ''The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.'' But in many ways, the 21st century has already overtaken us good guys." 7. The World Cup of Food It's Brazil's feijoada v. Croatia's roasted lamb pod pekoe. Belguim frites v. Algerian tchakshoukha. And, of course, Ghananian red red takes on U.S. BBQ. Follow along to see what delicious dishes get kicked out in the first round. 8. Bergdahl Explains in Prison Letters Why He Vanished “In the 2013 letter, he seems to be well aware the U.S. army was investigating his disappearance from his base. … He sets about explaining why he left his base, in poorly spelled block print.” 9. Confronting Racism Face-to-Face “Mo Asumang, daughter of a black Ghanaian father and a white German mother, talks to BBC News about her experiences making her new documentary, The Aryans, in which she confronts racists, both in Germany and among the Ku Klux Klan in America.” 10. Starting Wednesday: Live Stream The Summit: World Change Through Faith & Justice The Summit kicks off on Wednesday. It's a 4-day event that intends to create a space to build relationships and inspire social change. That success is based on the contributions of every person involved. That includes YOU — at home, at school — on the ground, making a difference. Since not everyone can come to us, we’re coming to you! Interact with the speakers by Tweeting #summitforchange or texting in your questions.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 24 weeks 16 hours ago
1. Seattle Pacific University Grieves After Deadly Shooting"'When the darkness closes in, Lord, still I will say, blessed be the name of the Lord,' they sang. And they cried. And they raised their arms high. And when the hymn ended, new words hit the screen: '#PrayforSPU.'"2. INTERACTIVE: D-Day Landing Scenes in 1944 and NowFrom The Guardian: Peter Macdiarmid has taken photographs of locations in France and England to match with archive images taken before, during and after the D-day landings. Check out the stunning changes.3. Four-in-Ten Pakistanis Say Honor Killings of Women Can Be At Least Sometimes JustifiedThe killing of a 25-year-old pregnant woman because she married without her family's consent in Pakistan has drawn international outrage. But so-called honor killings claim the lives of more than 1,000 Pakistani women every year.4. Remembering Tiananmen"Recently, as NPR’s Beijing correspondent, she took the famous picture from this time of “Tank Man” — a lone student standing in front of Chinese tanks — to contemporary university students in Beijing, asking if they could identify the iconic photo. Of 100 students, only 15 knew what it was, and they didn’t wish to discuss it. Their names were withheld out of respect for their anxiety."5. The Problem With Biblical AuthorityN.T. Wright writes for On Faith: "The risen Jesus doesn’t say, “All authority in heaven and earth is given to . . . the books you chaps are going to go and write.” He says, “All authority has been given to me.” The phrase authority of scripture can only, at its best, be a shorthand for the authority of God in Jesus, mediated through scripture."6. The Heated Battle for Cooled Texas PrisonsExtreme heat has killed nearly twenty people housed in correctional facilities. Now, inmates and guards have banded together to fight for improved conditions.7. The Church Has Been Left Behind"It is as if the church is stuck with the disciples in wondering when Jesus will restore Christendom to Christianity. It is as if the church has mistaken cultural normativity, full pews, big buildings, political influence, and societal power for the Holy Spirit. It is as if the church has forgotten the great commission to witness to Christ in their local towns, states, and to the ends of the earth. It is if the church is afraid of being left behind."8. The Lives of America's HomelessAt St. Stephen's Human Services in Minneapolis, Margaret Miles is creating oral and photographic histories of homeless people across Minnesota. "Somebody said, 'Gosh, that actually looks like the guy who drives my kids' school bus.' Well in fact it could be, and he could not be making enough money, or could have had a health crisis, or a divorce, or some other reason, and he's driving your kids and loving your kids and caring for your kids during his day job, and then having to sleep at night in a shelter."9. Candidates Who Signed Anti-Immigration Pledge Are Losing Their Primaries"In total*, 21 FAIR pledge signers lost to non-signers. Only two pledge signers have won so far in races where they were pitted against a non-signer."10. National Donut Day 2014: Where To Go To Get Your Free DoughnutsBut, "most importantly," today is National Donut Day. Go (do)Nuts!
Posted by God's Politics Editor 25 weeks 14 hours ago
1. Your Princess Is in Another Castle: Misogyny, Entitlement, and Nerds Self-identified nerd Arthur Chu provides piercing analysis on the recent shooting in Santa Barbara, examining how rape culture and recent sitcoms have instilled a sense of entitlement for “nerds” when it comes to “getting the girl.”2. Why #NotAllMen Misses the Point#NotAllMen is a flawed response to the twitter trend #YesAllWomen: "Avoiding blame isn’t enough to heal us. Distancing ourselves won’t end cycles of injustice, whether in the form of sexism, racism, or any other division. #NotAllMen can’t break an oppressive culture towards women."3. Maya Angelou Knew How To Inspire As A Writer, Teacher, and Great Human Being Sojourners board member Joshua DuBois reflects on the life of Maya Angelou: "The African American author, dead at 86, led an extraordinary life and wrote about it in extraordinary ways."4. Maya Angelou Is Not in Heaven "Angelou is not in heaven 'now.' Her writings show a joyful person who was never not in heaven. To me, an ongoing theme of her remarkable work has always been its full-on, all-in commitment to living life in the kingdom."5. Slavery Is Still Thriving And Is More Profitable Than Big Oil The International Labor Organization (ILO), a United Nation's agency focusing on labor issues, this weekreleased a report on the global "forced labor" industry. The results are staggering.6. Inside the Mind of Edward Snowden After months of behind-the-scenes contact, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams sat down with Edward Snowden, a man wanted for espionage here at home, for his first American television interview. Nothing was off limits.7. This Film Will Change How You See ImmigrationThe Stranger is a new 45-minute documentary created to introduce Christians to the stories and lives of immigrants living in this country. Interviews with pastors, Christian leaders, and policy experts provide a biblically based context for the immigration challenges that face our country today.8. Palestinian Refugees Welcome the Pope: The Story Behind the Iconic Photo at the Separation Wall In an effort to resist the Bethlehem Municipality’s efforts to beautify a section of the Apartheid Wall where Pope Francis was scheduled to pass, Local activists from Aida Refugee Camp gathered to paint slogans both against Israeli occupation and welcoming His Holiness, on the eve of his arrival, on May 24th 2014.9. The Wrong Way to Approach the PoorBefore we rush in with righteous vigor to help the helpless, so to speak, we would do well to dispense of some archaic lenses through which we view poverty.10. The Record for the Most Expensive Starbucks Drink Has Been Broken By a $55 Frappuccino On a lighter note, someone really took advantage of those free birthday drinks that accompany a Starbucks Gold Card membership — 60 shots of esppresso should be enough to wake you up, right?
Posted by God's Politics Editor 26 weeks 15 hours ago
1. Vincent Harding: A Light Shines in the DarknessJonathan Wilson-Hartgrove beautifully tells the story of Vincent Harding in Mennonite World Review: "Though we didn’t know it, the Movement here in North Carolina was making its silent march through the State House as Uncle Vincent was crossing over from this life to the next. Given the life he lived, I can’t imagine a better sending."2. Senators Urge NFL to Act on Redsk*ns NameFIFTY members of the Senate have signed a letter to the NFL asking leadership to change the offensive name of Washington's football team. JOIN in the efforts to change the name HERE. 3. When Did Christians Get So Caught Up in God Being Male? Kate Wallace at the Junia Project dives into the latest #warofwords on Twitter, this time between Owen Strachan of The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood and prominent egalitarian blogger Rachel Held Evans. In Wallace's piece: "Elevating one group of people above another in the name of God should never be accepted in the Church, and making God in our image, whether exclusively male or female, shouldn’t be accepted either."4. The Worst Day of My Life Is Now New York's Hottest Tourist Attraction"Nearly 13 years after my sister’s death, a reluctant Sunday visit to the 9/11 Memorial Museum, where public spectacle and private grief have a permanent home together."5. The Case for Reparations"Two hundred fifty years of slavery. Ninety years of Jim Crow. Sixty years of separate but equal. Thirty-five years of racist housing policy. Until we reckon with our compounding moral debts, America will never be whole." Ta-Nehisi Coates pens this long-form cover feature for The Atlantic tracing the history from slavery all the way through discriminatory housing policies and redlining. 6. The Way North: A New York Times Interactive StoryJoin Damien Cave and Todd Heisler as they travel up Interstate 35, from Laredo, Tex., to Duluth, Minn., chronicling how the middle of America is being changed by immigration.They're on Day 6 in San Antonio, interviewing 12-year-old Sebastien de la Cruz, who experienced a Twitter tirade of offensive slurs after singing the national anthem while wearing mariachi garb at last year's NBA Finals.7. WATCH - Sojo Stories: God and the Gay ChristianMatthew Vines became a YouTube sensation with his video "The Gay Debate: The Bible and Homosexuality." He recently sat down with Sojourners to talk about his new book, in which tells the story of his own pilgrimage of faith, fidelity, and family.8. No Lethal Injection Drugs? No Problem: Tennessee Reinstates Electric Chair"Republican Gov. Bill Haslam signed a bill into law Thursday allowing the state to electrocute death row inmates in the event prisons are unable to obtain the drugs, which have become more and more scarce following a European-led boycott of drug sales for executions."9. The Effluent SocietyIn the midst of an unprecedented drought, Wichita Falls is turning to a once unthinkable source to slake its thirst:"A city may survive for a time without electricity or natural gas, but water is the lifeblood of civilization. … The extremity of need in this part of Texas is so profound that Wichita Falls plans to turn this ancient relationship with human waste on its head — by drinking treated toilet water."10. 'We Can't Even Agree On the Definition of Consent'Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) hosted the first roundtable on campus sexual assault, pointing out the problems that exist and aiming to strengthen and clarify the Clery Act, as sexual assault survivors told their stories.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 27 weeks 16 hours ago
1. What the Media Can't Grasp About Pope Francis"… the world is ready to talk about inequality, redistribution, and an "economy of exclusion" for independent reasons, and the pope's words — which are very much in keeping with Catholic tradition — merely resonate because ears are ready to listen."2. Hack the Church"I want participatory church … An open source theology.” While our congregations dwindle and church doors shutter, a new group of technology-minded Christians (and just faith-friendly hackers), are breaking open a pathway for the future of the church — one that's inclusive, community-oriented, and innovative.3. Give JustlyIt's your last chance to enter to win a $350 gift card for fair trade products or other prizes via Sojourners' Just Giving Guide! It's as simple as a Facebook like!4. Young People Want Equality But Struggle to Discuss Bias"One oft-employed generalization about The Kids These Days is that they've grown up free from the legalized discrimination and racial neuroses of older generations, and they will live in a more multicultural world with less racism. But do we even know if that's true?"5. Guardian, AP, Others Challenge Lethal Injection SecrecyThe two news organizations and three Missouri newspapers have brought a legal challenge calling on the state to disclose the drugs used in lethal injections. "A Guardian survey has identified at least 13 states that have changed their rules to withhold from the public all information relating to how they get hold of lethal drugs. They include several of the most active death penalty states including Texas, which has executed seven prisoners so far this year, Florida (five), Missouri (four) and Oklahoma (three)."6 . Are You Reading Enough Academic Women?"Women read more than men, yet male authors still dominate literary journals." One writer and illustrator hopes to combat that fact social media-style with the Twitter hashtag #ReadWomen2014 and handle @ReadWomen2014.7. Illuminating Video on Teen's Mental Illness“Ask anyone that knows me now,” she says in the clip. “I’m the happiest girl because I know I’m getting the right support and help I need.”8. Student Journalists Exposed Columbia University's Rape Crisis. Then One of Their Own Was Accused.After uncovering a rape epidemic on campus, a student-run magazine blog wrestles with how to handle that crisis creeping into its own ranks — highlighting an institutional conflict of discretion and justice.9. Are Millennials Really Leaving the Church? Yes — But Mostly White Millennials“This is an opportunity for Christians to take a look at what they believe, and to ask, ‘Do we believe the Bible is good news for everyone?’” [Sojourners Emerging Voice Kathy Kang] says. “And if we do believe that, we have to find ways to communicate that good news with everyone.”10. Humans of New York"What's your greatest struggle right now?" "Not being white."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 28 weeks 16 hours ago
1. Dear Privileged-at-Princeton: You. Are. Privileged. And Meritocracy Is a Myth.A Princetonian responds to her classmate: “While Fortgang is not responsible for white male dominance in society, he should at least recognize that this social hierarchy is not a mere coincidence, nor is it a testament to the power of hard work.”2. The War Across the RiverThis beautifully photographed interactive from Al Jazeera tells the story of Central African Republic refugees crossing the Oubangi River into the Democratic Republic of Congo, a difference between life and death. "Refugees have come before, but this is something different … It seems they cannot return."3. Dear Americans, Your Hashtags Won't #BringBackOurGirls. You Might Actually Be Making Things Worse.“When you pressure Western powers, particularly the American government to get involved in African affairs and when you champion military intervention, you become part of a much larger problem. You become a complicit participant in a military expansionist agenda on the continent of Africa. This is not good.”4. Foster Kids Can Be Torn Between Worlds On Mother's DayRead this collection of stories of being or having foster mothers at NPR's Tell Me More.5. Letters to A Dying ChurchThis blog series explores the issues surrounding the decline of American Christianity. It asks the hard questions, offers suggestions, and sometimes just laments what cannot be controlled. Read the whole series of letters.6. The GOP Can't Ignore Climate ChangeJon Huntsman pens an op-ed for The New York Times decrying fellow Republicans' backtrack on climate change: "Last fall, 50 percent said there was solid evidence of rising temperatures on earth, according to the Pew Research Center. But that is down from 2006, when 59 percent of Republicans held that view. … So obtuse has become the party’s dialogue on climate change that it’s now been reduced to believing or not believing, as if it were a religious mantra."7. Austin's Utopian Homeless Village Is Becoming a RealityRent as low as $90. Permaculture food forest and gardens. Community space with movie screen. A stocked pond. Tiny houses built within 8 hours."The village just doesn’t feel like it’s a shelter for tragic people of some other class. It would be an incredibly lovely home for anyone, and many of the community’s principles are ones we could all use more of: living sustainably, and close to nature and animals, and spending time with those you love."8. Family Planning Through A Global Lens"In the developing world, access to tools for healthy timing and spacing of pregnancies can be a matter of life or death, for both the mother and the child. To women in these countries, the debates we have here would seem like a privilege."9. When Elite Parents Dominate Volunteers, Children LoseAn interesting problem for parents of school-aged kids: "It’s an inescapable fact that extracurricular activities, which increase student investment in school, are planned by parents who have ample time and money, who sometimes lack insight into the lives of students whose parents don’t."10. WATCH: Christian TingleIt's Friday. You need a laugh. "If it wasn't for the father, the son, and the Christian Tingle, I wouldn't have met the love of my life."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 2 days ago
"Grown men can learn from very little children for the hearts of the little children are pure. Therefore, the Great Spirit may show to them many things which older people miss." - Black Elk Black Elk + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 2 days ago
Then little children were being brought to him in order that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples spoke sternly to those who brought them; but Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.’ And he laid his hands on them and went on his way. - Matthew 19:13-15 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 2 days ago
God of eternal love, we know that Christ's glorious Resurrection is a testament to your unending love. Grant that we may look with hope to sharign in your heavenly glory, and see you face-to-face. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 3 days ago
"We've chosen the path to equality, don't let them turn us around." - Geraldine Ferraro Geraldine Ferraro + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 3 days ago
Then after this [Jesus] said to the disciples, "Let us go to Judea again." The disciples said to him, "Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are you going there again?" Jesus answered, "Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. But those who walk at night stumble, because the light is not in them." - John 11:7-10 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 3 days ago
Lord, we pray we never find ourselves without hope, without a glimpse of the empty tomb each time we happen upon a cross. Help us begin our daily journey expecting both crosses and empty tombs and rejoicing when we encounter either because we know you are with us. Amen. - Adapted from Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 4 days ago
“Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” - Native American Proverb Native American Proverb + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 4 days ago
Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord. Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications! If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with you, so that you may be revered. - Psalm 130:1-4 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 29 weeks 4 days ago
O Great Spirit, grant that I may never find fault with my neighbor until I have walked the trail of life in his moccasins. Amen. - Cherokee Prayer
Posted by God's Politics Editor 30 weeks 21 hours ago
"It is justice, not charity, that is wanting in the world." - Mary Wollstonecraft Mary Wollstonecraft + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 30 weeks 21 hours ago
Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your judgments are like the great deep; you save humans and animals alike, O Lord. How precious is your steadfast love, O God! All people may take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light. - Psalm 36:5-9 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 30 weeks 21 hours ago
God, source of new life, your Son broke the chains of death forever, as he rose powerfully to new and eternal life. Fill us with the joy of Resurrection, and the hope of that same Paschal miracle that made death itself the victim. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 30 weeks 21 hours ago
1. How Some Christian Colleges Are Getting Around the Federal Laws That Help Address Campus Rape From the report: The Clery Act, which requires college campuses to collect and report incidents of sexual assault on campus, does not apply to colleges that do not receive certain types of federal funding. What does that mean for victims on those campuses?2. WATCH: Jon Stewart Call Out Media Sexism in 'The Broads Must Be Crazy' Jon Stewart highlights the double-standard treatment given to female politicians in the media, referring specifically to Hillary Clinton's latest role: grandmother — like no other politician in the history of ever has had children who have then had children. Related: "How to Be Less Stupid About Hillary Clinton's Future Grandchild"3. Evangelical Climate Scientist Katharine Hayhoe Named One of Time's Most Influential People Written by actor Don Cheadle, who joined Hayhoe in the Showtime film "Years of Living Dangerously: "It’s hard to be a good steward of the planet if you don’t accept the hard science behind what’s harming it, and it can be just as hard to take action to protect our world if you don’t love it as the rare gift it is."4. WATCH: 'Unsung Hero' Thai Video Will Make Your Friday "What does he get in return for doing this every day? He gets nothing. … What he does receive are emotions. … Receives what money can't buy and a world made more beautiful."5. For the Children's Sake, Put Down the Smartphone "We are behaving in ways that certainly tell children they don't matter, they're not interesting to us, they're not as compelling as anybody, anything, any ping that may interrupt our time with them."6. Why South Sudan May Face the World's Worst Famine in Quarter Century "The coming weeks could determine whether tens of thousands will die."7. How Mississippi Businesses Are Fighting a New Anti-LGBT Discrimination Law "Working with the LGBT rights group Equality Mississippi, Moore and other business owners designed stickers that say, 'We Don’t Discriminate: If You're Buying, We're Selling.'"8. Cedarville University Shuts Down Dissenting Student Newspaper Rachel Marie Stone reports on the latest in a string of conservative moves at the Ohio Christian college that has included restricting Bible classes taught by women to only female students.9. John Boehner Mocks GOP on Immigration Boehner: "We get elected to make choices. We get elected to solve problems and it's remarkable to me how many of my colleagues just don't want to. ... They'll take the path of least resistance."10. Root of CAR Conflict Is a Legacy of Poverty, Not Religious Warfare "[Enough Project's Kasper] Agger said the Séléka rebellion was sparked initially by poverty and lack of development in the northern part of the country. If the conflict is seen in religious terms, rather than as having its roots in poverty, he said, the frustrations of the Séléka will remain."