Palimpsest – a document written over leaving traces of the original
A palimpsest is an old writing scraped from the original manuscript material to make room for a later over-writing, leaving only traces of the original.
We have witnessed an erosion of the plain meaning of the words found in the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibiting any government, federal, state or local, from “establishing” a religion. We have a federal appellate decision as recent as this year plainly re-stating that religious worship in schools is an activity that violates the First Amendment. Yet some government entities have embraced practices establishing religion, in effect, over-writing the plain meaning of the First Amendment.
In the past week, I invited our local government agencies to stop using public buildings for religious worship as a plain and blatant constitutional violation.
In response, some agreed that they couldn’t understand how or why the County permitted church services in our public schools. One wrote, “I have been bothered by the Grace Church sign on Harmony Middle School for some time. Wrote a letter to LCPS Administration but didn’t even receive a reply.” Continue reading →
Trigger warning: Rape, domestic violence and child abuse denialism, victim-blaming.
Critics of Stephen Baskerville’s astonishing Faith and Reason lecture at Patrick Henry College last Friday have no shortage of material to cite. The lecture was such a departure from even the pretense of academic standards that it’s easy for critics to frame it as a mistake that no one should take seriously; surely the cause of this catastrophe is that the administration failed to vet it properly, and surely the students have the necessary skills to reject it. PHC alum David Sessions reaches out to those students in an open letter:
To say it was beneath the standards of charity, evidence, and logical rigor students at PHC should expect from their professors would be an understatement. But beyond its weaknesses as a piece of argumentation, it had darker moral undertones that should be emphasized and rebutted. Anyone committed to the Christian virtues of love, charity, forgiveness, and justice should be deeply suspicious of such a hostile condemnation of the voices of people who have been subjected to violence and discrimination in our society, and of those who have worked courageously and democratically to protect them.
What a delightful time for some bipartisan solidarity. I have to applaud the crew at Too Conservative for shining a light on the obscenity now going on in Purcellville.
Last week, the Town started tearing out 250-300 year old oak trees to make more parking spaces for their new Town Hall (currently under renovation).
The building being renovated is expected to cost the town over $7 million (compared to an estimated $4.5 million for a new building). This structure was purchased from the Purcellville Baptist Church, which has constructed their own new building. According to many Purcellville folks (including deposed LCRC district chair Ben Belrose) it’s not only structurally in bad condition, but architecturally inappropriate for use as the Town Hall, hence the exorbitant price tag.
Then, on Monday morning the publisher of the Blue Ridge Leader got a call that the historic barn on the Cole Farm was being demolished. Continue reading →