Billionaire Bill Gates has shared his summer book reading list, among which is included The Magic of Reality by atheist author and evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins. Gates called Dawkins "one of the great scientific writers" of all time, despite what he said is his "overzealous" and "antagonistic" view of religion.
When recommending The Magic of Reality, Gates wrote: "It's an engaging, well-illustrated science textbook offering compelling answers to big questions, like 'how did the universe form?' and 'what causes earthquakes?' It's also a plea for readers of all ages to approach mysteries with rigor and curiosity." more >>
John Glenn, former astronaut and the first American to orbit the Earth, told The Associated Press in an interview last week that there is no conflict between evolution and a belief in God, and that evolution should be taught in schools.
"I don't see that I'm any less religious by the fact that I can appreciate the fact that science just records that we change with evolution and time, and that's a fact," Glenn, a Presbyterian, told AP. "It doesn't mean it's less wondrous and it doesn't mean that there can't be some power greater than any of us that has been behind and is behind whatever is going on."
Josh Rosenau, programs and policy director at the National Center for Science Education, told The Christian Post he is not surprised that Glenn would endorse the teaching of evolution in school. more >>
Chaos and disruptions in medical care have had one tragic and destructive effect that no one is addressing: the deaths of more than 2,000 physicians by suicide since Obamacare was passed by means of strong-arming and bribery.
Physicians in general have a higher rate of suicide than other professional groups and the general public. Women physicians' suicide rates are reported to be up to 400% higher than women in other professions. Male physicians' rates are 50% to 70% higher.
Why are more physicians seeing suicide as their only option? The rising rate since the 2010 Affordable Care Act was passed points to the added regulatory and financial pressures from Obamacare as major factors: more >>
To Matt Makela, the pastor caught on Grindr:
I hope that unlike what I did two years ago, you aren't reading everything that's been printed on you over the last couple of days. I hope you're entirely disconnected from the Internet and the many voices expressing their opinions of you and your actions. Nothing good can come from submerging yourself in all the media mess. But I do hope that someone you know comes across this article and sends it to you. Not because my voice is any more important than anyone else's, but because I've been there.
Not many people can say that they've been where you are, but I honestly can. The way you feel right now as your private life and sins are being tossed onto the world's stage – I know it well. more >>
"The God of peace is never glorified by human violence," wrote the famous Trappist monk Thomas Merton.
Whether it's on an individual, city, national, or international level, violence always dishonors God, and makes bad situations worse. The recent Baltimore City riots were no exception: people were injured, neighborhood stores were burned, and violence was further engrained into a city and world already steeped in violence.
But, and this is a big but: What are the reasons that led to violence? What motivated some African-Americans in Baltimore to riot? To ask and to try to answer these questions – in dialogue with the rioters – is certainly not meant to justify the violence; rather it is a necessary step on the road to ending it. more >>
As the debate over Alabama's General Fund budget shortfall continues, four schools of thought have emerged on how to solve this problem: a) tax increases, b) gambling revenue, c) unearmarking, d) and across-the-board cuts. Each one of these proposals has been deemed the obvious, simple solution to the problem, but none would actually be that straightforward. As proposed, three of the four would require the second, overlooked step of prioritizing spending--a difficult task in a currently fragmented Republican majority.
For example, if taxes are raised or gambling is expanded, where is this new revenue going to go? Assuming it goes to the General Fund, which programs or agencies will receive it? Will it be spread across the board equally or dedicated to certain services? Who will decide which functions of state government outrank the others? Except for the DOA idea of a lottery to fund Medicaid, none of these questions has a clear answer.
Unearmarking comes with the same uncertainty. To be clear, unearmarking does not generate any new money. The practice would merely give legislators more flexibility to move money around, but with the same financial obligations as before. In theory, this is a good thing as it would allow legislators to pick and choose, but will legislators suddenly be able to agree which programs should be cut and which should be funded? If the unearmarked money is not prioritized in a systematic way and no cost-saving reforms are adopted along with it, we may not end up any better off. more >>