Traumatizing the Tongue: Why Universal Languages Collapse

Below is the précis of a book I’ve been working on about the rise and fall of universal languages. Statement of Aims: Spirituality, Language, and History Solomon advises us in Proverbs 3:5, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” Why is Solomon so worried about human beings…

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What I wrote about monuments and totems in 2002 (when I was liberal)

Chapter I Monuments, Totems and the Veneratio Antiquitatis The prologue of the Passion of Perpetua and Felicity, a narrative about the martyrdom of two Christian women in Africa in 202 CE, begins with this statement about the nature of a text’s authority and its antiquity: If the old exemplars of faith, which testify to the…

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On Not Loving Monuments. This is what I wrote ten years ago

It’s hard to believe 10 years have passed since I wrote this paper. I was on my way out of the military at the time. I presented this at an Ethnic Studies conference in early 2011.             After receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in December 1964, Martin Luther King Jr. showed a dramatic change in…

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Conspiracy as theory and practice: How much of 2020 has been pure coincidence?

“Conspiracy theorist!” Like the now-banned words “retard” and “lunatic,” the charge of conspiracy theorist is a classically Soviet slur. It is designed to make you think that your judgement is so distorted that nothing you conclude about the world could possibly be real. “Conspiracy theorist” is akin to calling someone an enemy of peace and…

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My Glimpse of the SBC’s Race Machine

Ralph Ellison’s 1952 novel Invisible Man is a Molotov cocktail. It presents a complex legacy of America’s racial history. The book’s length and experimental prose style make it dizzying. But that’s arguably the point: America has been driven so crazy by its irresolvable racial grudges that the only truthful response to racial problems is dizziness.…

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Shakespeare’s take on the firings at Southern and Albert Mohler

“A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!” So cries Richard III just before he dies, bringing down the Plantagenet line in the late fifteenth century. Shakespeare captured the tragic figure of the deformed and unloved, but power-hungry and ambitious pretender in the five-act tragedy named after its protagonist, King Richard III. Ralph FIennes…

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Whom to contact to say NO! to federal financial support to SBC leaders

If you do not want taxpayer money to be used by corrupt SBC leaders to entrench themselves even further and engage in their usual swamp nepotism, then let your concerns be known to these people: Nancy Pelosi https://pelosi.house.gov/contact-me/email-me . Pelosi is the Speaker of the House, the highest ranking member of the House of Representatives.…

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Remember “we ain’t gonna play Sun City”? How about “we ain’t gonna fund SBC”?

In a May 7, 2020 post at the ERLC website, Russell Moore showcases a letter he sent to Nancy Pelosi, Kevin McCarthy, Chuck Schumer, and Mitch McConnell. In this letter Moore pleads for more federal dollars so that religious organizations like the SBC can weather the coronavirus crisis better. He wants charities, charitable nonprofits, and…

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On Racism

I’ve seen a lot of people posting about the killing of a black man by vigilantes. It seems always that racial strife comes back each time we think we may have moved past it. Each generation alive, it seems, has to experience racial conflict as a new and shocking betrayal when we are youths, then…

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