Anonymous, M.D., Unprotected: A Campus Psychiatrist Reveals How Political Correctness in Her Profession Endangers Every Student (New York: Sentinel, 2006).   The student newspaper of the University of California, Santa Barbara (my home town) is called the Daily Nexus. Once a week, it runs a student-written column called with the “Wednesday Hump.” Recent columns addressed anal sex, animal fetishes, fellatio, girls kissing girls, group sex, sexually transmitted diseases, virginity, and—well, it’s a veritable A through Z of sexual immorality. No wonder UCSB is informally known as the University of Casual Sex and Beer.   My guess is that the … Continue reading Unprotected

It’s Really All About God

  Samir Selmanovic, It’s Really All About God: Reflections of a Muslim Atheist Jewish Christian (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2009). $24.95, 320 pages.   The older I get, the more I find myself using the phrases, “on the one hand” and “on the other hand.” Age, experience, and continued education have taught me that there is more than one way to see and do things.   These things have not made me agnostic about finding truth, however, as if contradictory hands canceled each other out. Rather, they have had the effect of winnowing my beliefs and behaviors, of distinguishing between what … Continue reading It’s Really All About God

This Is No Picnic for Me Either, Buster

President Obama will speechify to K-12 students tomorrow. Some conservatives have accused the president of attempting to indoctrinate students. I think that’s a bogus criticism, and if you read the speech, I think you’ll agree. It’s boring. My problem was with the initial Department of Education suggested lesson plans for kids who watch the speech. One suggestion was to ask the students how they could help the president. My suggestion? Tell him to leave the country well enough alone. I doubt that’s the kind of help the president is seeking, however. Thankfully, the D of E revised that suggested lesson … Continue reading This Is No Picnic for Me Either, Buster

Imagination First

Eric Liu and Scott Noppe-Brandon, Imagination First: How to Unlock the Power of Possibility (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2009). $24.95, 240 pages. Imagination First is two books in one. The first is a field manual of practices that will stimulate imagination. The second is an argument about how imagination will change the world. I found the first to be both insightful and helpful; I found the second to be an exercise in swishy thinking. As a field manual of imaginogenic practices—I just used my imagination to create that word!—Imagination First succeeds admirably. Eric Liu and Scott Noppe-Brandon have surveyed the literature, … Continue reading Imagination First

When Athens Met Jerusalem

John Mark Reynolds, When Athens Met Jerusalem: An Introduction to Classical and Christian Thought (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2009). $22.00, 266 pages. When Athens Met Jerusalem by John Mark Reynolds begins and ends at the Areopagus, where Paul famously disputed with a group of Athenian philosophers (Acts 17:16-34). In between, it takes us on a whirlwind tour of Greek philosophy, surveying the pre-Socratics (chapter 1); Socrates (chapter 2); Plato (chapters 3-7); Aristotle (chapters 8-9); and the neo-Platonists, Epicureans, and Stoics (chapter 10). The stated purpose of this tour? To tell “the story of Greek philosophy and how it helped … Continue reading When Athens Met Jerusalem