Tag: Johnson

My New Semester: Creating Appreciation for American History

In two weeks, all the faculty meetings begin; in three weeks, classes start once more. My summer of research, reading, and preparation for the new semester will come to an end. I will begin my 30th year of teaching university students. One of the courses I’ll be teaching this fall is the one I always teach in the fall: my basic American history survey course that covers America from its colonial days through Reconstruction after the Civil War. I’ve used… Read more »

An Encouragement to All Who Teach

As a professor for nearly thirty years, my aim has been to instill solid Biblical principles and sound historical teaching based on original sources and insightful secondary works, with the ultimate goal that students would be able to see for themselves how those principles and sources reveal truth. The trendy phrase is “to develop critical thinking.” Professors/teachers sometimes wonder how successful this endeavor has been, especially when teaching a class that few of the students seem to care about or… Read more »

A Compromised Principle, Unfortunately

The guideline I try to follow when considering whether I support a policy action is whether it actually advances the position I ultimately want to see enacted. I have stated that stance in these words before and will do so again: A compromised principle leads to unrighteousness, but a principled compromise is a step closer to the principle’s ideal. For instance, on abortion, I don’t take an all-or-nothing approach. If a proposed bill decreases the number of abortions, I support… Read more »

Third-Party Options?

With respect to my stated conviction that I will not be voting for either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump, I’m repeatedly asked about options. They are few, and yes, I understand that no one on a third-party ticket is going to win the presidency. Yet it’s worth looking briefly at what some consider to be third-party options—a place to go without violating one’s conscience. Most of the third-party attention is focused on the Libertarian Party and its nominee, former New… Read more »

On Political Courage

Here’s a thought. What if, at the Republican convention next week, the powers-that-be allowed a secret ballot to choose the nominee? What if the delegates truly had the freedom to vote according to what they believed best for the party and the country instead of being pressured by their political leaders to fall in line with Donald Trump? Would that secret ballot vote be different than the public one? If so, what would that say about those delegates? What would… Read more »

What About Impeachment?

Talk of impeachment is beginning. President Obama’s latest power grab, declaring publicly that he will act without Congress to get done what he considers his priorities, is rankling those who are committed to the delicate separation of powers established by the Constitution. Is this just talk? Are there sufficient grounds for impeachment? Is it even politically feasible? Impeaching a president is a big step. Two presidents have been formally impeached: Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton. A third, Richard Nixon, resigned… Read more »

False Faith & A New Reality

I’ve commented before on the unrealistic expectations some of President Obama’s supporters had for him as he assumed the office. As historian Paul Johnson has noted, the loss of Christian faith in the Western world has allowed all sorts of false messiahs to rise to the top. People want to have faith; they simply choose the wrong gods. There is only one. Consequently, it’s not surprising when disillusionment sets in. Many promises were made. The most outlandish had to do… Read more »