December 18, 1992 |
"Leap of Faith" shows Hollywood's perception of heartland America has changed little since "The Grapes of Wrath. " The movie takes place in the extremely fictitious town of Rustwater. The community has been without rain (or even rustwater) for months. Crops are failing. Farms are in foreclosure. The "mills" are closed. The unemployment rate is 27 percent. Of course, the town is full of people whose lips move when they read, and who say things like "I can smell trouble like s - - - on a griddle.
November 12, 2007 |
For those who thought "Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Eight" would lose steam once creator Joss Whedon stopped writing it - and those who have yet to pick up an issue - it's clear you gotta have Faith. Yes. Faith, the ally/nemesis of Buffy immortalized by Eliza Dushku on the small screen, takes center stage during the current story arc written by Brian K. Vaughan. Vaughan, an admitted "Buffy" fan, is the talented writer behind the "Y: The Last Man" series and has also written for ABC's "Lost.
October 2, 2008 |
Bill Maher demands proof. What he gets as he spans the globe interviewing religious fundamentalists of various faiths are testimonials offering no tangible evidence of a deity. Don't tell him it's called faith precisely because there is no tangible evidence. The millennial incarnation of Doubting Thomas, Maher - controversialist and host of HBO's Real Time - is a devout skeptic. And he is undeterred. In Religulous (rhymes with ridiculous ), he impiously demands that true believers - Christian, Jew, Mormon, Muslim, even the pothead priest at Cannabis Ministry in Amsterdam - tell him why they believe.
May 20, 2005 |
Though Marco Bellocchio's My Mother's Smile announces itself as critical of the pieties of the Vatican and motherhood, it is a riveting, rich portrait of an atheist who thinks he's resistant to faith but may be in the throes of a feverish conversion. The movie centers on Ernesto (the marvelous Sergio Castellitto, an actor with the face of John Turturro and the force of Al Pacino). Ernesto is a celebrated Roman artist estranged from his wife and from his family of origin. It might be said that God reconnects Ernesto with his son and his siblings.
February 9, 2001 |
"If men were angels, no government would be necessary," quoth Professor John J. DiIulio Jr. yesterday as he explained how he plans to put Washington into the angel biz. Philadelphia's DiIulio is director of President Bush's new White House Office of Faith Based and Community Initiatives. The office fulfills a presidential campaign promise. "We're enthusiastic, we're hopeful, we've got some incredible, diverse, strange bedfellows: a good-faith coalition of support from religious leaders, secular leaders who are looking seriously at this, but we are not going to know anything definitive until we actually do this," DiIulio said.
October 17, 2004 |
The national Democrats have found God. For decades, the party most closely identified with secular values had generally avoided talking about religion, except while stumping for African American votes on Sunday. But now, as evidenced by John Kerry's newfound willingness to air his Catholicism, national party leaders have determined that he can't win the 2004 presidential race unless he convinces uncommitted voters that faith informs his politics. So there he was, in the third debate last Wednesday, quoting from the New Testament Book of James ("What does it mean, my brother, to say you have faith if there are no deeds?"
April 28, 2008 |
WELCOME to my morning routine: I check my overnight e-mails for direct threats and forward them to the police. Upon arriving at work - having taken a route different from the day before - I boot up a computer that connects to a security hotline. Life went on high alert four years ago, when my book came out. "The Trouble with Islam Today" challenges sexism, anti-Semitism and other prejudices that pervade the contemporary Muslim world. I quickly became an internationally best-selling author, cheered by people who believe in universal human rights.
January 15, 2004 |
At a time when the Democratic Party was suffering perhaps its greatest strain in modern history, Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut stood before his peers in the Senate and broke ranks with his party: He criticized President Bill Clinton for his sexual misadventures. He was the first Democratic senator to proclaim Clinton "immoral" for his conduct in the Monica Lewinsky scandal. "In this case, the President had extramarital relations with an employee half his age and did so in the workplace, in the vicinity of the Oval Office.
August 30, 1995
Given the never-ending circus in Judge Lance Ito's Los Angeles courtroom, it's easy to forget that the job of prosecutors is not just to "win" cases. Their primary responsibility is insuring fair trials. For everyone. That principle, central to our justice system, has been forgotten amid all the hand-wringing over the Philadelphia police corruption scandal. The behavior of the former cops at the heart of the scandal was bad enough, but the district attorney's office - whose job it is to insure that every defendant is treated fairly - is making matters worse.
September 6, 1994 |
Things fall apart; the center cannot hold. . . . The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity. - William Butler Yeats "The Second Coming" And you thought Ireland was bad, Willie. You should see America as it stumbles through what's becoming one of the meanest of political seasons. Passionate intensity washes over the land, or at least the AM radio dial. The attack politics of Oliver North, Pat Buchanan and the Christian Coalition are met by a terrified counterattack from the left.