What's Tony Thinking

Abortion: The Missing Person

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May 23, 2019 — Abortion is in the news as new, and extremely conservative, legislation is passed in Alabama and Mississippi and considered elsewhere. I’ve never found abortion an easy issue to resolve in my heart and mind. I preferred it when we spoke of it as “tragic,” and the goal was “safe, legal and rare.” As the new... Read More

Easter: Maybe It’s Not Up to Us?

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May 21, 2019 — Here is a follow-up to my own post-Easter piece on New York Times columnist, Nick Kristof’s, conversation with Union Seminary President, Serene Jones. Colleague and friend, Matt Fitzgerald, also responded to the Kristof/ Jones piece in an essay at the Christian Century website. It’s terrific. The Century titled Matt’s short piece, “The Same Old Easter Debate about... Read More

Notes from Hawaii

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May 20, 2019 — Our Hawaii idyll comes to an end now. We head home to Seattle today after two weeks in Hawaii, celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary, which is today, May 20. Our time alternated, by intention, between days that were just the two of us, and time with family and friends. The first week we were on... Read More

Can You Be Liberal and Pro-Family?

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May 13, 2019 — For at least a generation conservatives have managed to corner the market on the pro-family label. Indeed, to argue for policies that encourage the one-income family where a mother (or father) who wishes to do so may stay at home to focus on child raising is to risk being called reactionary or worse. My own... Read More

To Impeach or Not to Impeach?

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May 11, 2019 — In 1932 a famous argument took place between the brothers Niebuhr, Reinhold and H. Richard, in the pages of The Christian Century.  The issue at hand was whether the U.S. should intervene militarily in China in response to the Japanese invasion of China, and reports of Japanese atrocities against civilians. Though this seems a long way... Read More

The Second Book of Scripture

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May 9, 2019 — Medieval mystics referred to the natural world, God’s creation, as the “Second Book of Scripture.” I suspect that for many the natural world is, in reality, the “First Book of Scripture.” Apprehended long before Genesis to Revelation. Well, wherever you place it, the natural world is extraordinary. And as the Psalms put it, “The heavens... Read More

Where Have You Gone Mr. Robinson?

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May 6, 2019 — Perhaps you have noticed that there’s been a hiatus in my blogging? No big mystery. My MacBook required repair. The “logic board” was whacked, or so I was told. I found that a little amusing. “The ‘logic board’ is busted,” seems an accurate diagnosis of our nation’s situation these days. Ah well. A highlight of... Read More

Return to Malheur

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April 25, 2019 — I first visited the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge when I was a field zoology student at Willamette University in, well, long ago. Then I was enchanted by the vast spaces, the quiet, the desert, the wetlands and the wildlife. In particular the birds. Malheur is a prime migratory bird habitat on the north/ south flyway.... Read More

Nick Kristof’s Easter Conversations

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April 23, 2019 — New York Times columnist, Nick Kristof, has been doing conversations with different well or somewhat well-known Christians at or around Easter for several years now. His first, that I recall, was with Tim Keller, the founder of the multi-site Church of the Redeemer in New York City. Keller had built a church that appealed to... Read More

Complex Thinking Needed

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April 20, 2019 — In many areas of life, including some of the most contentious, our society and we who make it up seem increasingly less capable of complex thinking. But since life is complex, the capacity for complex thinking is required — if real progress is to be made on some of our more vexing issues. This is... Read More