Long before Sarah Palin met CPAC and the Duck Dynasty clan discovered A&E, George Gallup Jr. famously declared 1976 the “Year of the Evangelical.” Subsequent commentators often pluralized “evangelical.” They might have done the same for “year,” too. In many years hence—1980, say, or 2004—it was 1976 all over again, to judge from the headlines. Those election years highlighted the Christian Right, a force that was not on Gallup’s radar screen back when Jimmy Carter was the prototypical evangelical in public life.
The years of the evangelicals were not only about campaign politics, however.
Holidays evoke moments of reflection. Americans just celebrated Memorial Day, a time to honor those who have fought and died in wars for the nation. Traditionally, people hold parades, gather in cemeteries and rally around monuments to fallen soldiers.
It is hard not to conclude, given his recent stumbling about on the issue, that at some point prior to his 30th birthday Governor George W. Bush used cocaine. There is no evidence of this, and there are no charges, only vague rumors which the governor has said he will not address. Will Bush succeed in halting media and political speculation on the topic?
Sunday morning comic sections occasionally include one of those confusing hidden pictures which can abruptly assume a different shape depending on how you focus on the images. Some people insist there is no three-dimensional shape in those colorful blocks of color; other smugly know that there is. Those shapes are like a poem, which calls on the reader to grasp the meaning in the design.
In an essay in the New York Times, written prior to the presidential election and its tension-filled aftermath, author Alan Ehrenhalt argues that the dominant fact of our political life during the late 1960s to the early 1990s, or what he calls the Republican era, was a cultural backlash “against rising rates of crime, illegitimate birth and drug addiction, and a defense of relig
Presidential candidate George W. Bush has fueled a debate on U.S. military readiness by charging, among other things, that the military has been neglected and underfunded during the Clinton years. He has specifically charged that two of ten active army divisions are unprepared for combat. This claim appears to be true: two army divisions have not completed combat training.
It’s a puzzle: the Christian Coalition is fighting off extinction, but the Religious Right seems as powerful as ever. “Christian Coalition losing clout” headlined the (Norfolk) Virginian-Pilot on February 19, the day of the pivotal South Carolina Republican presidential primary.