A Christian Idealist’s Guide to Citizens United

July 24, 2020

Citizens United v. FEC, 558 U.S. 310 (2010), is a well-known (or notorious) case about money and politics. It was rightly decided. The First Amendment’s protection of freedom of speech is more important than restrictions on election spending in the name of preventing the appearance of corruption, or equalizing the influence that differing groups have over elections. The legal reasoning of the majority opinion is stronger and more compelling than the reasoning of the dissent. Citizens United, a corporation devoted […]

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Coronavirus and Employment Law

April 11, 2020

QUESTIONS and OBSERVATIONS The sudden onset of Coronavirus has created a ‘pandemic’ of new legislative acts, laws, rules and rulings, which would be challenging to grasp if done at ordinary speed. At these speeds, it’s bewildering, even as to a subset of relevant Coronavirus law in the employment arena. By way of background, on March 18, 2020, President Trump signed into law the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), effective April 1, 2020.  This created two, new emergency leave entitlements, […]

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Coffee House Discourse #5

February 7, 2020

In which our Vagabond Overhears a Confession One Saturday morning people are standing in front of the coffee house, speaking of various things, including the partisan nature of current politics, and why their particular causes have not been meeting with success. Sorrow features in these discussions, suggesting that I might offer to such people a handful of my fish and chips, purchased down the street at Foghorn. I could present them as a peace offering, a harbinger of optimism. On […]

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Coffee House Discourse #4

July 29, 2019

In which our Vagabond Is Instructed from an Unlikely Source I wander into the coffee house on a Sunday afternoon, expecting to meet a friend, Andy Windsor, for a friendly game of theology chess. He is indeed situated in one of the large booths, chessboard set up. Andy is waiting for my arrival in an area of the coffee house near the back which provides additional seating, situated on a wide-width plank floor of dark-stained pinewood, raised about eight inches […]

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Coffee House Discourse #3

May 11, 2019

In which our Vagabond Seeks a City in Motion. It is early Saturday evening, the doors are open, the coffee house beckons. I enter into a crowd – young and old, in pairs, groups and singles, are standing in line, checking their phones, reviewing the menu board, sitting astride chairs, leaning on counters, stirring their mugs, contemplating their next move, and conversing with animation and verve. After securing a mug of herbal orange blossom tea and plain pound cake (something […]

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Coffee House Discourse #2

April 5, 2019

Coffee House Discourse # 2 – In which our Vagabond Needs, and Finds, A Bridge I wander into the coffee house on a Saturday morning. The place is quiet – I interrupt a girl looking at her cell phone, who takes my order. I go for a toasted, buttered ‘everything bagel’ along with a large coffee which I will heavily dose with cream and sugar. A few people are scattered around, reading on a laptop, checking their phones for text […]

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Coffee House Discourse # 1

March 29, 2019

Coffee House Discourse # 1, in which  a Vagabond Appears. Coffee houses are staging areas for a broad variety of activities, including rants, raves and discourses from the patrons. These spring forth, unbidden, for the benefit of anyone who happens to be sitting nearby drinking an espresso, threads in the tapestry of coffee house background ambience. No revolution was ever launched without at least one heated discussion in a coffee house or its local equivalent. In the spirit of ventilating […]

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O, Man of Islam

December 19, 2018

Recently, I was visiting my friend and Christian brother, Darryl, in Mahanoy State Correction Institute (SCI) outside Frackville, PA. Darryl is serving a life sentence, and has been at Mahanoy about four years. Although Mahanoy is a medium security institution, it is a newer facility and a preferred place to Huntington SCI, where he spent 26 years. Darryl is African-American, close to 60 years old, of medium height, has snow white hair and has gained a little weight since his […]

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