Tuesday, September 29, 2015
In a recent op-ed entitled, “The ‘Enlightenment’ keeps on winning,” James A. Haught, an editor emeritus of a West Virginia newspaper, asserts in his latest column that since the advent of the Enlightenment, for three centuries, liberals have scored a string of historical victories over conservatives, and he “hopes the progressive pattern keeps rolling forever.”
Haught writes: “Around three centuries ago, major thinkers began advocating democracy, human rights and personal freedoms. Their period became known as the Enlightenment. It launched the long-running liberals-versus-conservatives conflict still driving much of today’s politics.” After scantily listing the contributions of Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), John Locke (1632-1704; photo, right), Baron Montesquieu (1689-1755) and even Voltaire, he goes on to characterize our Founders: “Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, James Madison, Benjamin Franklin, etc. were brilliant radicals who absorbed the Enlightenment ideas and incorporated them into the first modern democracy.”
Yes, our Founding Fathers were brilliant men, sons of the Enlightenment, but as to being called “radicals” that is subject to debate, as is the...
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
For new readers it might be difficult to tell if Dr. Bill Cummings’ column “Is Christianity dying in America?” was written with glee or with slight regret, like the puzzling smile of Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa.” For those of us who have read some of his previous columns deprecating the Catholic Church, of course, it is not difficult to discern the gloating and streak of satisfaction, especially when he affirms that while it is not dying, “it’s declining for sure.”[2,3]
The persistent attacks upon the foundation of an institution in which he formerly belonged, which educated and nurtured him as a former priest, and perhaps inspired him in his eventually becoming a successful motivational speaker and business executive is a sad state of affairs. And as he points out, Cummings, who strives to be a latter-day Voltaire, is not alone in his thinly veiled rejection of his faith: Christianity and the Catholic Church are indeed in a declivity ushering the decline in Western civilization and America, the pinnacle of that civilization.[4,5]
Make no mistake about it, concomitant with the decline in Judeo-Christian values, America is in moral and economic decline,...