Celebrity memoirs often appeal to readers’ basest motives. They hope to discover some secret formula for success. Or they want to know whether the author took revenge on enemies or intimates. If the author is a public figure, readers are on the lookout for clues to an ideological bent or personal grievances that will make the author’s future decisions predictable.
In a recent editorial calling for same-sex marriage to be legal, the Century editors noted that if and when legalization happens at the national level, the First Amendment will protect religious groups that have their own position on the question. The government won’t, for example, be able to force a church or minister to perform a same-sex wedding against their will.
Yet as Mark Silk notes, a range of religious liberty questions will likely have to be addressed—and probably litigated.
Jonathan Chait is exactly right about the unspoken conservative position on health-care reform:
Opponents of the law have endlessly invoked “socialism.” Nothing in the Affordable Care Act or any part of President Obama’s challenges the basic dynamics of market capitalism. All sides accept that some of us should continue to enjoy vastly greater comforts and pleasures than others. If you don’t work as hard as Mitt Romney has, or were born less smart, or to worse parents, or enjoyed worse schools, or invested your skills in an industry that collapsed, or suffered any other misfortune, then you will be punished for this. Your television may be low-definition, or you might not be able to heat or cool your home as comfortably as you would like; you may clothe your children in discarded garments from the Salvation Army.
If Solicitor General Elena Kagan, preparing for confirmation hearings to make her the newest member of the U.S. Supreme Court, is installed, it would change the religious makeup of the nation’s highest court. But does it really matter that the bench would include six Catholics and, with her confirmation, three Jews and no Protestants?
Many evangelicals cheered when the Supreme Court ruling allowed a cross to remain as a war memorial in California’s Mojave Desert. However, some Christians, including some in the evangelical camp, caution that a celebration may not be in order.
A coalition of religious leaders and a top Presbyterian official have blasted the Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling that would allow large corporations to give unlimited financial support to candidates during elections.