Textualism centers on the text. The text is the law, not the supposed intent of the legislators or the hypothesized purpose behind their actions. Textualism seeks to give the text a “fair reading” – not an overly reductionist one, not an overly simplistic one, but a fair one. The most famous proponent of textualism isContinue reading “Fake Textualism”
Sunshine pours over the riverbank, illuminating the crunchy pale-colored rocks that line the far bank. The narrow creek slides away in front of me. The zinging clamor of the cicadas melts into the back of my mind. Green growth tumbles down toward the river on all sides. On the northern side of the creek, theContinue reading “The River – Part 2”
We take the logging road to the river and park near a recent clear-cut. The dim morning light rains down through gaps in the pines, illuminating the gravel road and sparkling off of the hemlock needles still wet with dew. We traverse the grown-up trail and arrive in time to see a pair of elusiveContinue reading “The River – Part 1”
The Supreme Court’s June 30 decision in Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue was a landmark victory for religious liberty and school choice. It was also an exhibition of Justice Clarence Thomas’ unabashedly originalist interpretation of the Establishment Clause. His concurrence in Espinoza joins a long line of cases in which he has defending theContinue reading “Clarence Thomas’ Establishment Clause Originalism”
The Supreme Court’s June 30 decision in Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue is a landmark victory for religious liberty and school choice. The Court held that state governments cannot exclude religious organizations from generally available funding programs just because the program affords students the choice of attending religious schools. I have summarized this caseContinue reading “An Irrelevant Distinction”
In a landmark victory for religious liberty and school choice, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on June 30, 2020 that state governments cannot exclude religious organizations from a student aid program just because the program affords students the choice of attending religious schools.* The case was Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue, which involved aContinue reading ““Everyone” Includes Religious People, Too”
“Who controls the past controls the future.” Since George Orwell published his jarring novel 1984, Big Brother and the Thought Police have sat uncomfortably in the back of our minds. None of us want to live in Oceania, but a recent development in the news media suggests that there are some who would wish thatContinue reading “Orwell’s Prophecy”
The Paradox of Artistic Interpretation: A Commentary on T.S. Eliot’s “Tradition and the Individual Talent”
“The emotion of art is impersonal. And the poet cannot reach this impersonality without surrendering himself wholly to the work to be done. And he is not likely to know what is to be done unless he lives in what is not merely the present, but the present moment of the past, unless he isContinue reading “The Paradox of Artistic Interpretation: A Commentary on T.S. Eliot’s “Tradition and the Individual Talent””
What is the most effective way to create cohesion among opposing groups? Provide them with a common purpose. I propose that, for the opposing sides on today’s environmental issues, a shared love of place (oikophelia) is that common purpose. An appreciation of home and place requires valuing the civic order that we live in andContinue reading “The Case Against Environmental Regulation”
I want to suggest an alternative approach to veganism. I do not have anything against veganism, and I know many wonderful people who have made it a significant part of their lifestyle. However, I believe that there is a better way to address the concerns that these people often have that does not involve givingContinue reading “A Better Way to be Vegan”
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