Persecuted Christians & the U.S., Hamilton & Adoption: Twenty Five Things That Caught My Eye Today — July 10, 2020

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1. Christianity Today: Persecuted Christians Resettled in US Drop Dramatically Under Trump

2. Ukraine’s ‘Holocaust Disneyland’

The desire of the memorial’s core donors and board to forge an original and affecting memorial is laudable. Yet Mr. Khrzhanovsky’s record of approaching the totalitarian past by re-creating it in the most visceral manner raises a disturbing question. Is vividly bringing the aesthetics of Nazi terror on the very ground where it had taken place an appropriate way to honor victims?

3.  Erdogan signs decree converting Hagia Sophia into mosque

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Hagia Sophia is nearly 1,500 years old and served as one of the most exalted seats of Christian and then Muslim worship in the world, meaning that any change to its status will have a profound impact on followers of both faiths. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

4.  Beijing Launches a Global Assault on Free Speech

According to Article 38 of the law, anyone, anywhere in the world, could be accused under this new set of rules. A non-Hong Kong resident living outside Hong Kong—indeed, theoretically, someone who has never been to Hong Kong or China—could be committing a supposed crime.

5. Coronavirus: Dementia patients ‘deteriorating’ without family visits

During the pandemic, there have been 5,404 excess deaths – an increase of 52.2% compared with the five-year average – of people with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in England and Wales, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

6. Children in China locked up for as long as 10 days at internet addiction camp

7.  The Tragic Loss of Coronavirus Patients’ Final Words

Sometimes, a nurse or doctor managed to connect the patient with their loved ones before the tube went in. But dyspnea is a medical emergency, after all, so in many cases there was simply no time for that last call, or anyone available to arrange it. As the disease progressed, families were left clustering around a phone as a hospital worker held up the device for a final goodbye on FaceTime. Often, the family could talk to their loved one, but not vice versa. That’s not enough. What the dying have to say must be heard.

8.  In echo of Mao era, China’s schools in book-cleansing drive

A directive from the Ministry of Education last October called on elementary and middle schools to clear out books from their libraries including “illegal” and “inappropriate” works. Now teachers have removed books from schools in at least 30 of mainland China’s 33 provinces and municipalities, according to a Reuters review of social media posts, publicly available school and local government documents, and interviews with teachers.

From western Gansu province to Shanghai, the review of publicly announced measures pointed to books being cleared by the hundreds of thousands.

9. The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board: Joe Biden vs. the Nuns

Harassing nuns in court for four more years won’t unite the country, and it makes us wonder if Mr. Biden will ever be capable of saying no to the ascendant cultural left.

10. People With Disabilities Face Threat of Medical Bias, Health Care Rationing During COVID-19 Outbreak

Advocates in Texas are especially concerned by the lack of protections against medical care rationing and bias that could lead to the denial of treatment for people with disabilities, who may be considered high risk for severe illness and complications from COVID-19 infection because of an underlying medical condition.

According to Sean Jackson, supervising attorney for Disability Rights Texas, triage committees — which are intended to provide ethical oversight — might not eliminate all bias.

“We also are still talking about human beings that are doing these jobs and human beings that are bringing their own attitudes and biases and predispositions about certain individuals. And I think that the concern is that it gets conflated with making a sound medical decision with some predisposed notion that this person’s value, their quality of life is not worth (us) expending resources on them,” he said.

11. Record number of people called NSPCC with fears over child welfare during lockdown

The main concerns centred on parental behaviour, physical and emotional abuse, neglect and sexual abuse. Around 40% of the calls or messages received were referred on to local authorities or the police, the NSPCC said. One person told the helpline: ‘I’ve become increasingly disturbed by the noises coming from one of one my neighbours – it’s been getting worse since the lockdown. I can hear the mother shouting and swearing at her two little ones, it sounds vengeful and aggressive.

12. Michael Wear: A Politics Worse Than Death

The powerful sometimes have unique reasons to fear death because of their power, but COVID-19 has caused powerful people to fear death simply because they are human. There is a certain unity in this.

13. Medical disability rights in the era of COVID-19

14. Why Hamilton’s ‘adoption’ might be more significant than we realize

Hamilton’s wife Eliza married him when he was still anonymous and penniless and saw his transformation close-up. It inspired her to establish the first private orphanage in New York in his memory, and the musical ends as it began: with a question about whether children who cannot live with their families are getting the help they need to make their mark in the world

. . .

Nowadays we don’t have ‘orphanages’ in the West and there is a worldwide movement transitioning children from institutions into family-based care. Nevertheless Eliza’s motivation and challenge is powerful — are we doing enough for vulnerable children? Can we see the hero in them?

. . .

Recently I spoke to a young single woman whose time in lockdown has given her space to consider how she could make a difference in the world. She was already highly committed to volunteering and runs a major part of her company’s corporate and social responsibility work and has now decided to adopt a child who needs a family. She is not the only one thinking along these lines. My charity saw an 88 per cent increase in enquiries in June this year compared to last June. In one city alone we have had over eighty families enquire to become emergency foster carers during lockdown.

15. Lawmakers Aim To Address Problems of Aging Out of Foster Care During a Pandemic

Assemblywoman Didi Barrett introduced a bill in the legislature that would let young adults who would normally age out stay in the foster care system for an additional six months after the pandemic ends.

It would also apply to young adults who might have already aged out of the system earlier this year.

“This has been a traumatic time,” Assemblywoman Barrett explained. “It’s been really difficult and imagine doing this at that age, maybe with young children, without a family to turn back to. This is the right thing to do.”

16. The Little Sisters’ Supreme Court Saga Could Be Far From Over

Ryan Anderson, an expert in religious liberty at the Heritage Foundation, told the Register that the case is likely far from over.

“Undoubtedly, the states that sued the Trump administration for protecting the Little Sisters will continue to do so,” he said. “And, as soon as the Trump administration leaves office and an administration hostile to religious liberty comes to D.C., you can expect these Trump protections to be watered down or eliminated. As much as I hope today’s ruling will end the legal struggle for the Little Sisters, I fear it will continue.”

Shapiro stated Wednesday that “this fight is not over.” The Pennsylvania attorney general said following the decision that the state will continue this challenge and “return to the lower courts to address whether the exemptions are arbitrary and capricious.”

17. Timothy P. Carney: Yes, the math teacher at a religious school is a religious teacher

For religious parents giving their children a religious education, religion class isn’t the only way, or even the primary way, we hope school will form our children in our faith. Our kids, of course, need to know scriptures. They need to get accustomed to the sort of moral reasoning our church teaches. These are the jobs of religion teachers. But they also need constant examples and training in how God wants us to live, and this is the job of every adult in a position of authority or respect at our kids’ schools.

. . .

Our kids’ schools are, at their best, shining cities on a hill. Every teacher there is a role model, who — whether teaching times tables, discussing C.S. Lewis, leading a rosary, or showing how to turn a double play — we hope will be imbuing our children with the virtues and the faith that a Christian should have.

18. Richard W. Garnett: Religious Schools and the Freedom of the Church

Justice Clarence Thomas, joined by Justice Neil Gorsuch, wrote separately to highlight the importance, especially for “minority faiths” or religious organizations that are “outside the ‘mainstream,’” of deferring to such organizations’ own understandings of religious ministry and leadership. For courts to second-guess these understandings would lead to the kind of church-state entanglements and intrusive official overreach that the First Amendment exists to prevent. And a rule that focused on teachers’ academic credentials, or on religious leaders’ familiar honorific titles, could well work to the disadvantage of religious communities whose practices are less familiar to American judges.



21. Christopher F. Rufo: Cult Programming in Seattle

Once the diversity trainers have established this basic conceptual framework, they encourage white employees to “practice self-talk that affirms [their] complicity in racism” and work on “undoing [their] own whiteness.” As part of this process, white employees must abandon their “white normative behavior” and learn to let go of their “comfort,” “physical safety,” “social status,” and “relationships with some other white people.” As writer James Lindsay has pointed out, this is not the language of human resources; it is the language of cult programming—persuading members they are defective in some predefined manner, exploiting their emotional vulnerabilities, and isolating them from previous relationships.

22. Growing wiser through the elderly


24. The Daily Signal: Ohio Town Announces It’s a ‘Sanctuary City’ for Historical Statues

“I, David M. Lynch, as City Manager for the City of Newton Falls do hereby proclaim that Newton Falls shall be known as a ‘Statuary Sanctuary City’ welcoming statues rejected by other cities across the United States and also proclaiming a general amnesty for George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, Ulysses S. Grant, Patrick Henry, Francis Scott Key, Theodore Roosevelt, and Christopher Columbus as represented by statues removed all across the United States,” his proclamation reads.

25. BBC News: Cathedral’s spire will be restored to 19th Century design

Mr Macron had previously hinted he was in favour of a “contemporary gesture”.

However he has said he wants the restoration to be completed by 2024, when Paris is hosting the Olympics.

The Elysée said Mr Macron’s main concern was “not delaying the reconstruction and making it complicated – things had to be cleared up quickly”.

PLUS: I’ll be talking with George Weigel on Wednesday about the future of the Church and the world, and about his new book, The Next Pope. Join us. Virtually, of course. Details here.


Read the Original Article Here

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