The Common Good

Table of Contents

Cover Story

The BP catastrophe invites us to take a hard look at ourselves. We invited eight writers to offer their reflections on images from the Gulf Coast disaster.


Atlanta does battle against the sex trafficking of kids.
An economist explains why reducing the deficit will require big cuts in military spending.
The Israeli group Zochrot seeks to introduce fellow Israelis to the people who lived on the land before them -- and to engage Jews and Palestinians in an open recounting of their painful common history.
A New York cabbie offers food, and more, to the city's homeless.


We need to listen carefully to those hurt by the oil spill.
Evangelicals, race, and sexual orientation.
Why national flags don't belong in church.


An ethic of endless economic growth, powered by fossil fuels, is ultimately unsustainable.

Dragonflies have a way of turning up at threshold moments -- like God's early warning system for amazing grace.

For David Fraccaro, the immigration debate isn't just politics: It's faith.

Humans are like ants, only less productive.

Culture Watch

On being the people of God in a particular place.
Tattoos on the Heart, by Gregory Boyle. Free Press.
Lit: A Memoir, by Mary Karr. HarperCollins.
Bettie Mae Fikes talks about the music of the civil rights movement.
It’s ironic that the explosive, high-budget thrill rides understand so little about their own themes.
Let's just call the Music City deluge a naturally occurring metaphor.
Seeking the Beloved


The hospital chaplain who sits in the room of a sick child in Chicago and brings the child to God—not with words but by her quiet presence.