Two films underscore the peril posed by a world of illusion made possible by our media, and the ideological mirages that such illusions can create.
- The current Liberty Law Talk is with Vincent Cannato, author of American Passage: The History of Ellis Island, on the Constitution and immigration policy. Would that the majority in Arizona v. United States had read their history on this subject.
- The Books section this week features Bradley Smith’s review of John McGinnis’ Accelerating Democracy: Transforming Governance Through Technology.
- Betting on the effects of homeschooling, Art Carden puts his money down at Econ Lib.
- So the future is predictable, boring even. A respected Seattle florist refuses to create a wedding floral arrangement for a same-sex ceremony, and, of course, she’s being sued by the Washington Attorney General’s office for allegedly violating that state’s Consumer Protection Act. This case seems to mirror the Elane Photography case in New Mexico, same facts and probably a similar outcome will ensue. Although the Elane case is still ongoing, the defendant photographer hasn’t had much success. The Seattle florist, of course, notes that she regularly serves gay customers and has no animus against them. However, she refuses to make an floral arrangement in this instance because the nature of the event conflicts with her Christian belief. In addition to her religious liberty defense, she cites her constitutional right of free speech. Building a wedding arrangement requires skill, expression, which is related, she claims, to understanding the event itself. Being impressed into service, the desire of the AG’s office, also requires dragooning the florist’s voice and expression.
What did EEOC commissioner, Chai Feldblum, say was her view about these types of conflicts, something about “I’m having a hard time coming up with any case in which religious liberty should win.” Commissioner Feldblum, how about this one? In related news, the Boy Scouts in California are now in danger of losing their tax exempt status at the hands of the state legislature. As the late Richard Neuhaus intimated, orthodoxy is never optional and is always being prescribed.
- Claire Berlinski writes about the Iron Road of Margaret Thatcher:
It was power that established her importance, and power that brought into being all of her now-immortal incarnations—diva, mother of the nation, coy flirt, hissing serpent, stern headmistress, eyes of Caligula, mouth of Bardot, screeching harridan, frugal housewife, Boadicea the Warrior Queen, and Iron Lady, all in one.
- Denizens of the urban planning movement, the gurus who want Americans living in dense housing in or near city centers won’t like Joel Kotkin’s latest post on rising American cities, and the enterprising Americans that are growing them.
- Richard White’s essay “Before Greed” argues that there was a time when Americans weren’t always so obsessed with accumulating wealth. So, is accumulating wealth a bad thing?