1. Drone Strikes Reveal Uncomfortable Truth: U.S. Is Often Unsure About Who Will Die
Following the president’s admission this week that two Western hostages were killed in a drone strike in Pakistan, protestations against the veiled drone program have re-escalated. “Every independent investigation of the strikes has found far more civilian casualties than administration officials admit. Gradually, it has become clear that when operators in Nevada fire missiles into remote tribal territories on the other side of the world, they often do not know who they are killing, but are making an imperfect best guess.
2. Infertility and the Role of the Church
This week is Infertility Awareness Week. Writer Rachel Marie Stone dives into some of the attitudes about infertility and reproductive technologies in the church.
3. Meet Your New Attorney General
After postponing a vote for more than five months to fight along party lines over abortion language in a human trafficking bill, the Senate voted Thursday to approve the nomination of Loretta Lynch, 55, making her the first black woman to head up the Justice Department.
4. Those Countries at the Top of the World Happiness Report Also Have Great Press Freedom Rankings
See what country falls where and read more about the correlation.
5. How ‘Take Your Daughter to Work Day’ Allowed Men to ‘Come Out’ as Public Parents
While it has shifted to “Take Your Daughters and Sons to Work Day,” the occasion started in the 90s as a way to boost girls’ self-esteem and resilience. “I can only hope that in their lifetimes, it will seem quaint that we needed Take Our Daughters to Work Day in the first place — that when their own children ask why such a day was needed, it will be hard to explain in a world where children of both sexes know that they can be anything.”
6. Meet the U.S. Citizens Charged With Trying to Join or Help ISIS
BuzzFeed is keeping a list of the dozens of American arrested for trying to travel abroad, purportedly to provide material assistance to ISIS. Learn more about them here.
7. The Art of Law and Gospel
“When do we speak these words of Law and Grace? This is the difficult task of all believers. It is what Walther suggests is the ‘most difficult and highest art.’ Whether that be when parents speak to their children, when preachers share a sermon, or when a friend has a conversation, distinguishing Law and Gospel is an art. It takes an artist to determine when to stop and when to keep pushing. It requires art to know how to build the tension and when to release that tension. And it takes art to discern, what words does this person need to hear right now?”
8. Iran Is Much More Modern Than You Think
“The Iran of today has changed dramatically. In more liberal cities like Shiraz and Isfahan, young entrepreneurs have opened small cafés and Bob Dylan's ‘The Times They Are a-Changin,’ has become the favorite song. Young students hold hands in public and women pull their obligatory headscarves back to the point where their hair is visible (a forbidden act).”
9. The Upwardly Mobile Barista: Examining Starbucks’ Partnership with Arizona State to Send Baristas to College
A model for other businesses and an answer to the college dropout rate? “‘Everybody spends all their time talking about money and cost,’ Michael Crow, Arizona State’s president, told me. ‘That’s a variable. That’s not the determining factor. The determining factor is creating the culture for success.’”
10. How Young American Muslims Are Forging New Intentional Communities
An all-female Muslim congregation in a former-synagogue-turned-multifaith-space in East LA paints a picture of the changing face of American Muslim communities, often spearheaded by millennials. “For a while, when Muslim Americans referred to a ‘third place,’ they were often speaking about the mosque. But in recent years, as the institutional and systemic weaknesses of American mosques became increasingly apparent, they began searching for alternative gathering spaces.”