Similar to many of my Western counterparts, my first thoughts when I first heard about the attacks in Norway went to extreme Islamic terrorism. I had heard about the growing tensions in Scandinavia because of the increasing Muslim population and cultural shifts arising as a result. Thus, when I heard through a friend that a Norwegian school had been attacked, I assumed the attack to be a response from a Muslim terrorist group. I asked if it was al Qaeda or such other organization. My friend responded, "Probably." Thus, you can imagine my surprise when I saw the picture of the suspect who appeared very Scandinavian with fair skin and complexion.

According to the New York Times, the attacks in Oslo killed at least 92 people and the orchestrator left behind "a detailed manifesto outlining preparations and calling for Christian war to defend Europe against the threat of Muslim domination." If I had read that statement out of context, I would think one was talking about the Christian Crusades of the 12th century.

Julie Clawson 08-01-2011

1100801-cowboysandaliensAmericans have a hard time knowing how to respond to the sins of our colonial past. Except for a few extremists, most people know on a gut level that the extermination of the Native Americans was a bad thing. Not that most would ever verbalize it, or offer reparations, or ask for forgiveness, or admit to current neocolonial actions, or give up stereotyped assumptions -- they just know it was wrong and don't know how to respond. The Western American way doesn't allow the past to be mourned or apologies to be made. Instead we make alien invasion movies.

'Statue of liberty' photo (c) 2011, Rakkhi Samarasekera - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

"I will call them my people, who were not my people. And her beloved, who was not beloved." (Romans 9:25 referencing Hosea 2:23)

Estranged, alienated, and removed; anyone living in an industrialized modern society in the 21st century would be able to define, or at least identify the sentiments of these words. Our time is one of mass communication and instantaneous access to knowledge. And yet our lives are too compartmentalized, increasingly divided, and our society reflects this. Indeed the existential writers of yesteryear were correct in diagnosing the iron cage that would befall us, ultimately leading to an eclipse of reason.

Hannah Lythe 07-14-2011

[Editors' note: As part of Sojourners' campaign to end the war in Afghanistan, we will run a weekly Afghanistan news digest to educate our readers about the latest news and developments related to the war, the U.S. military's strategy, and the people impacted by our decisions. Read more about our campaign at www.sojo.net/afghanistan.]

Laurna Strikwerda 07-07-2011

Ten days after 9/11, Rais Bhuiyan, an immigrant from Bangladesh, was working at a gas station in Dallas, Texas when a man walked in with a gun. Thinking the store was being robbed, Bhuiyan opened the cash register

Jim Ball 05-18-2011
Whoever is our next president -- whether President Obama in a second term or the eventual Republican nominee -- will be the most consequential president ever for overcoming global warming
Laura Robinson 05-17-2011
Growing up, I had never heard of John and Stasi Eldredge's Ransomed Heart Ministries and their co-written book, http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1400200385?ie=UTF8&tag=sojourners-20&am
Betsy Shirley 05-16-2011
By the time Egyptian activists in Tahrir square had ousted Mubarak, I'd read more articles labeling it a "Facebook revolution" than you can wave a shoe at.
Jeannie Choi 04-15-2011

Weddings. T-Shirts. Taxes. Here's a little round up of links from around the Web you may have missed this week:

  • Looking into the past, from the present.
  • Do you believe in living more with less? Do you design T-shirts?
  • We continue to pray, fast, and act for the budget. Join us.
Andrew Hyun 03-14-2011
Last winter, in the flurry of Christmas parties and potlucks, I was called in for jury duty.
Becky Garrison 02-16-2011
Duke Divinity School is hosting an inter-faith conference on torture from March 25 to 26, with the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT), the Duke Human Rights Center, and the North C
Rabbi Arthur Waskow 02-04-2011
Today I want to focus on the people of Egypt -- those million or more who have gathered in Tahrir Square, both as a united, insistent, revolutionary body, and as individuals -- professors and bake
Matthew Soerens 01-19-2011
In some ways, 2010 was a great year for evangelicals who have longed for the church to stand for just and compassionate immigration reform.
Julie Clawson 01-18-2011
My daughter came home from school recently with a worksheet that described life before and after Martin Luther King Jr.
I confess: I used to cringe every time I heard the "R" word.
Andrew Simpson 12-13-2010
As members of Congress debate the DREAM Act once again, opponents of the act are again attacking the legislation as "http://seeingredaz.wordpress.com/2010/12/01/backdoor-amnesty-dream-act-
Julie Clawson 09-01-2010
Emergent Village will be hosting its annual Theological Conversation this year in Atlanta, GA from Nov.
Vincent Harding 08-23-2010
[Editor's Note: In anticipation of the anniversary of the March on Washington on August 28, 1963, God's Politics will feature a series of posts on the