Gorsuch would “walk out the door” if asked to overturn Roe

The following was an exchange between Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch and Republican Senator Lindsay Graham during yesterday’s marathon confirmation hearings: Graham: I don’t think there’s any reason to suggest you’re his [Trump’s] favorite. Had you ever met Mr. Trump personally? Gorsuch: Not until my interview. Graham: In that interview, did he ever ask you to overrule Roe v. Wade? Gorsuch: No, Senator. Graham: What would you have done if he had asked? Gorsuch: Senator, I would have walked out the door. This exchange is getting all kinds of coverage,…

Still crying wolf

Hitler and the Nazi’s have long held a quasi-mythological status in the American psyche. I do not know when this began, but it has simply been a fact for my entire conscious life.1 I can only imagine that, in centuries gone by, Satan and his devils filled the niche in the collective social consciousness that Hitler and his Nazis serve today. Deep down, the people of all Western democracies wonder if their nation could–given the right historical circumstances–follow the path of Nazi Germany. And all the citizens of these nations have…

Victimhood culture metastasizes

One of the most important papers for understanding the political climate we live in is “Microaggression and Moral Cultures” by Bradley Campbell and Jason Manning (The article made a splash–it was covered in The Atlantic, among other places–and we covered Jonathan Haidt’s reaction to it here at Difficult Run back in September of last year. You can download the full paper for free, however, and you should do that). In the article, Campbell and Manning explore three stages in the evolution of moral culture: Honor culture Dignity culture Victimhood culture The…

About the University of Chicago and Free Speech

Let me give you some background: I’m one of those guys is very skeptical of the impact of contemporary social justice activists1 on free speech. One of the most-read posts I’ve ever published to Difficult Run was my manifesto on the topic: When Social Justice Isn’t About Justice. I stand by it. So when news broke that the University of Chicago had sent out a letter to students warning them that there’d by no “safe space” or “trigger warning” shenanigans, you might think that I’d feel a little sense of triumph,…

Mass shootings and missing white woman syndrome

I haven’t posted anything about gun control in the middle of this most recent medley of outrage. This is primarily because I haven’t seen anything that looks remotely like a rational debate in which I could participate. It’s also because I’ve written on this topic at great length already1, and there is not a whole lot new to add. It’s not that I’m opposed to considering new policies to solve the problems of widespread gun ownership.2 Nope, the problem is that I find most of the folks who are calling…

Trump and Fear

Let’s talk about Donald Trump. Believe me, I don’t like it any more than you do. I find Donald Trump’s success in the GOP primaries exasperating and depressing. I haven’t written about it very much because I don’t like to think about it very much. I changed my mind when he announced that he thinks we should ban all Muslims from entering the country. The Hill reported: Trump, in a formal statement from his campaign, urged a “total and complete shutdown” of all federal processes allowing followers of Islam into the country until…

Mass shootings and heroes

There was another school shooting yesterday, this time at a community college in Oregon. There are all kinds of rumors and arguments flying around Facebook. For the most part, that just makes me want to turn off my computer for the day. But there is one thing I want to share first. Almost exactly one year ago, Mother Jones published an article summarizing research concluding that “Rate of Mass Shootings Has Tripled Since 2011.” I’ve read the research claiming that the rate has actually not increased and, after reading the article…

Was Fiorina telling the truth about abortion?

For me, the only moment of genuine passion and conviction in the entire CNN GOP debate came when Carly Fiorina linked the Iran issue (“the defense of the security of this nation”) with abortion (“the defense of the character of this nation”). Here is what she said: Fiorina has been excoriated in the media for this statement, not least because the debate was the most-watched event for CNN. Planned Parenthood has been in damage-control mode over the ongoing release of undercover videos documenting the sale / donation1 of human organs…

Close-Minded Christians Protest Bernie Sanders… Oh Wait…

Jesse Singal makes a simple but worthwhile point at NYMag: Liberty University Students Survived the Unsafe Space Created by Bernie Sanders and His Pro-Choice Views (somehow). The backstory is simple: Bernie Sanders came to speak at notoriously conservative Liberty University and, although he faced tough questions from a generally hostile crowd, no one protested to deny him the opportunity to speak and no one interrupted his speech. Contrast that as Singal does, with basically any liberal-dominated college you can think of: For example, Emily Yoffe, who has written about the…

I Can’t Give Up Hope for Romney 2016

New York Magazine says Romney Is Horrified by Trump — and That’s Restarting ‘Mitt 2016’ Talk, and the story is getting echoed at places like Breitbart. CNN is in on the rumors as well: But while Mitt Romney doesn’t back the Trump agenda, Robert Costa of The Washington Post reports that his check-in with close Romney advisers produced no evidence the former Massachusetts governor is heeding any of the calls for him to reconsider the race. Not yet, anyway. “He’s very surprised that Jeb Bush hasn’t got a lot of traction,” said Costa.…