Noteworthy Articles

The following articles provide thoughtful ways of framing religion in public life in the U.S.:

“Why Trump Reigns as King Cyrus”
The month before the 2018 midterms, a thousand theaters screened “The Trump Prophecy,” a film that tells the story of Mark Taylor, a former firefighter who claims that God told him in 2011 that Donald Trump would be elected president.

“The Real Origins of the Religious Right”
One of the most durable myths in recent history is that the religious right, the coalition of conservative evangelicals and fundamentalists, emerged as a political movement in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling legalizing abortion.

“A New Americanism: Why a Nation Needs a National Story”
In 1986, the Pulitzer Prize–winning, bowtie-wearing Stanford historian Carl Degler delivered something other than the usual pipe-smoking, scotch-on-the-rocks, after-dinner disquisition that had plagued the evening program of the annual meeting of the American Historical Association for nearly all of its centurylong history.

“Of Course the Christian Right Supports Trump”
In 1958, the Baptist preacher Jerry Falwell, who would go on to found the Moral Majority, gave a sermon titled “Segregation or Integration: Which?”

“A Recent Local Controversy Reveals the Theocratic Heart of ‘Project Blitz’” 
Much has happened since RD broke the story last year of Project Blitz—a stealth state legislative campaign of the Christian right that framed much of their agenda in terms of religious freedom.

“Politics as the New Religion for Progressive Democrats”
The voters who are most amped for the 2018 elections look elite in nearly every way. They are Democrats, college-educated, and largely secular.

“Democrats Need to Talk About Their Faith”
Just over a year ago, before the frenzy of the midterm elections hit full swing, I traveled to Ohio to campaign with Senator Sherrod Brown, who was running for reelection. I told the crowds about the Sherrod I know from the weekly prayer breakfast he hosts in the Capitol, every Wednesday when the Senate is in session.

“Can Black Evangelicals Save the Whole Movement?”
Not long ago, when Southern Baptists in Knox County, Tenn., invited Walter Strickland to speak at one of their meetings, he wasn’t sure what to expect. Mr. Strickland, a theology professor at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C., is one of the few African-American scholars teaching at a Southern Baptist seminary.

“A Brief History of Islam in America”
Much of the debate in the US surrounding President Trump's ban on immigrants and refugees has tended to assume that Muslim Americans are mostly migrants and that Islam is a relatively new phenomenon in America, along with questions about integration and assimilation.

“Jews in America: By the Numbers”
Anti-Semitic incidents in the past week have made headlines and added to a growing trend in 2017. Eleven Jewish community centers were evacuatedMonday after receiving bomb threats, and nearly 200 headstones in a Jewish cemetery in St. Louis were vandalized over the weekend.

“Religious Liberals Want to Change What It Means to Be a Christian Voter”
The meeting began with a prayer. Heads bowed and eyes closed. Then the members of “We Are Church Confessing,” a group of liberal faith leaders and activists from greater Des Moines, got to work.

“Grassroots Progressive Christianity: A Quiet Revolution”
In Chicago a Tony Award–winning piano player improvises a jazz tune while some thirty church members dance and another hundred sing . . . in Phoenix a congregation can hardly wait for new scholarship on who Jesus was as a first‐century Galilean . . . in Boston the United Methodist bishop, a woman, appointed a pastor to the new church formed explicitly to affirm the full participation of gays and lesbians . . .

“The Deepening Crisis in Evangelical Christianity”
Last week, Ralph Reed, the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s founder and chairman, told the group, “There has never been anyone who has defended us and who has fought for us, who we have loved more than Donald J. Trump. No one!”