Tom Ehrich 07-10-2013
Blue vintage globe map photo courtesy Shutterstock.

Blue vintage globe map photo courtesy Shutterstock.

Tumult in Egypt reminds me how complicated the world can be, especially for a culture like our own that is shaped by good guy vs. bad guy dramas.

Who are the “good guys” in Cairo? Is the ousted president a good guy for being democratically elected or a bad guy for pursuing isolationist Islamic policies? Is the military saving Egypt or preserving privileges?

It isn’t just the inherent complexity of any human situation. It’s the complexity of societies that have rules and histories quite unlike our own.

Jim Wallis 11-03-2011

How helps us understand that principled behavior isn't merely something a PR/Corporate Social Responsibility staff or attorneys tell us is important. Rather it is the surest path to success and relevance in business and in life.

Mary Elizabeth King 08-29-2011

The forthcoming dedication of the national memorial monument honoring Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., affords an opening for considering the complexity and meaning of his leadership. He was not the tamed and desiccated civil hero as often portrayed in the United States around the time of his birthday, celebrated as a national holiday. He was until the moment of his death raising issues that challenged the conventional wisdom on poverty and racism, but also concerning war and peace.

King was in St. Joseph's Infirmary, Atlanta, for exhaustion and a viral infection when it was reported that he would receive the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize. As Gary M. Pomerantz writes in Where Peachtree Meets Sweet Auburn, this was the apparent cost exacted by intelligence surveillance efforts and the pressures of learning that Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy had formally approved wiretaps by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. His evolving strength as a leader is revealed in his remarks in Norway that December, which linked the nonviolent struggle of the U.S. civil rights movement to the entire planet's need for disarmament.

Debra Dean Murphy 07-28-2011

"And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full. And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children." --Matthew 14:13-21

Immediately before the story of the feeding of the 5,000 is a description of a very different sort of meal: John the Baptizer's head on a platter. And just as women and children are included among the multitude fed on the beach (a detail unique to Matthew's version of the story), the female sex is also represented in the account of John's demise: Herodias, sister-in-law of Herod, asks for the head of the Baptist; her nameless daughter, with no detectable squeamishness, delivers the request to the king and serves up the plated head to her mother. (That women in all of their moral complexity are present throughout Matthew's gospel - recall also the women who appear in the genealogy of Jesus in chapter one -- is an observation worthy of closer scrutiny. See, for instance, Jane Kopas's 1990 essay in Theology Today).

Claire Lorentzen 06-21-2011

The Public Religion Research Institute recently released the results of their newest survey, "Committed to Availability, Conflicted About Morality," which shined new light on the complexity of opinions on abortion between different religious groups and age demographics. The study results were presented two weeks ago at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C.

The most intriguing age group in the study are Millenials, ages 18 to 29. In the introduction to the survey results, the authors claim that given Millenials' self-described characteristics of being "confident, self-expressive, liberal, upbeat, and open to change," they have a "peculiar profile" when it comes to their views on abortion. And this is especially "peculiar" when viewed alongside their strong support for gender equality and rights for gay and lesbian people. Millenials' complex, label-defying views of abortion make them "conflicted about morality," the report states. But are Millenials really, actually conflicted about morality?

Timothy King 05-04-2011
If I had been in a baseball stadium on Sunday night, I would have been chanting "USA!
Logan Isaac 04-04-2011
Forty-three years ago today, Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and killed in Memphis, Tennessee.
Bethany Anderson 12-27-2010

Maria, 7, and Lupe, 3, are our next-door neighbors. For some reason, they have decided they like coming to our house. I'm not exactly sure why, we have nothing that I would consider appealing to a 3- and 7-year-old, but they come ... almost daily. Because of this, and our history with their family over the past few years, we have gotten to know their story quite intimately.

Melvin Bray 08-04-2010
One day I'd love to understand why conservatives seem so good at public relations, while liberals, at ridicule.
Rose Marie Berger 04-12-2010
In any in-depth conversation about the effectiveness of nonviolence as a strategy, this question always comes up: Would these nonviolent strategies have worked against the Nazis?
Andrea Woods 03-03-2010

It is Death Penalty Awareness Week, and supporters of human rights across the country have turned their attention to a uniquely complicated injustice -- the implementation of capital punishment in the United States.

Tim Costello 12-15-2009
Yesterday was a day of high drama where Africa walked out, suspended talks, and then later in the day returned after the Danish facilitators took on some of their concerns.
Jim Wallis 12-14-2009
President Obama laid out a moral defense of the use of force in his acceptance speech in Oslo
Kathy Khang 11-19-2009
In the eight years I worked specifically with Christian Asian American college students, I knew that my gender would get in the way.
Neeraj Mehta 06-24-2009
Why are people poor? I remember being asked this question 10 years ago while training for a program I was volunteering with.
Marilyn McEntyre 05-15-2009
A student once asked me whether in my opinion Mark Twain actually said that the coldest winter he ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.
Edward Gilbreath 03-10-2009
An article in the Chicago Tribune caught my attention this week.
Adam Hamilton 11-12-2008
Watching Barack Obama's victory speech and reflecting upon the significance of his election as the next president of the United States left me profoundly moved.