At Harvard, Adherence to Basic Christian Principles Is Considered Intolerant

March 2 2018

Harvard University recently put the campus Christian group Harvard College Faith and Action on “administrative probation” for pressuring a student to resign from the group’s leadership because she is in a lesbian relationship. Andrew T. Walker comments:

Harvard has now taken to disciplining a Christian student group—and not some radical fringe group, but the largest Christian group on campus—for the group’s expectation that its student leadership follow Christian ethical teachings on sexuality. . . .

Gone ought to be any pretense that universities such as Harvard are in any sense interested in diversity or tolerance. Secular campuses that traffic in diversity, and who worship at the altar of intersectionality, while singling out Christians for holding to Christian doctrine and then penalizing them for it, [are guilty of bald-faced] hypocrisy. And in this case, hypocrisy is the tribute that liberalism pays to vice.

But even on the relative scale of liberal hypocrisy, Harvard is a special case: the school was founded explicitly on Protestant, even Puritan faith and is now penalizing a group for holding to religious convictions that would have been identical to its founders’ views. All in the name of enforcing doctrinaire liberal politics. The shift is so radical that while just a few decades ago it took some courage to be openly gay at Harvard, these days it takes a great deal of courage to be openly Christian.

Sadly, the spectacle at Harvard is hardly unique.

Read more at Weekly Standard

More about: American Religion, Harvard, Homosexuality, Religion & Holidays, University

The Danger of Hollow Fixes to the Iran Deal

March 20 2018

In January, the Trump administration announced a 120-day deadline for the so-called “E3”—Britain, France, and Germany—to agree to solutions for certain specific flaws in the 2015 agreement to limit the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program. Omri Ceren explains why it’s necessary to get these fixes right:

[Already in October], the administration made clear that it considered the deal fatally flawed for at least three reasons: a weak inspections regime in which the UN’s nuclear watchdog can’t access Iranian military facilities, an unacceptable arrangement whereby the U.S. had to give up its most powerful sanctions against ballistic missiles even as Iran was allowed to develop ballistic missiles, and the fact that the deal’s eventual expiration dates mean Iran will legally be allowed to get within a hair’s breadth of a nuclear weapon. . . .

A team of American negotiators has been working on getting the E3 to agree to a range of fixes, and is testing whether there is overlap between the maximum that the Europeans can give and the minimum that President Trump will accept. The Europeans in turn are testing the Iranians to gauge their reactions and will likely not accept any fixes that would cause Iran to bolt.

The negotiations are problematic. The New York Times reported that, as far as the Europeans are concerned, the exercise requires convincing Trump they’ve “changed the deal without actually changing it.” Public reports about the inspection fix suggest that the Europeans are loath to go beyond urging the International Atomic Energy Commission to request inspections, which the agency may be too intimidated to do. The ballistic-missile fix is shaping up to be a political disaster, with the Europeans refusing to incorporate anything but long-range missiles in the deal. That would leave us with inadequate tools to counter Iran’s development of ballistic missiles that could be used to wipe Israel, the Saudis, and U.S. regional bases off the map. . . .

There is a [significant] risk the Trump administration may be pushed to accept the hollow fixes acceptable to the Europeans. Fixing the deal in this way would be the worst of all worlds. It would functionally enshrine the deal under a Republican administration. Iran would be open for business, and this time there would be certainty that a future president will not act to reverse the inevitable gold rush. Just as no deal would have been better than a bad deal, so no fix would be better than a bad fix.

Read more at Commentary

More about: Donald Trump, Europe, Iran, Politics & Current Affairs, U.S. Foreign policy