A VOTE TO DEFINE MARRIAGE
The U.S. Senate is to consider the controversial Federal Marriage Amendment next week. So far, most of the words about this anti-gay legislation have come from people who would identify themselves as religious conservatives. Now other religious voices are speaking out against the amendment. To read about those voices, click here. To read about efforts of proponents to pass the amendment, which would prohibit same-sex marriage, click here. For the official text (and related material) of the proposed constitutional amendment, click here.
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LISTENING TO INTERESTING PEOPLE
Whatever you think of Bill Moyers (pictured here) -- brilliant and gentle man, pollitical hack, insightful questioner, liberal wimp -- LBJ's former press secretary always seems to be up to something interesting.
Starting June 23, he's coming back to PBS with a seven-part series of hour-long interviews with people about religion and public life. It's called "Bill Moyers on Faith & Reason."
I thought that the series Moyers did a few years ago, "Genesis: A Living Conversation", was well worth the time to watch, even if a few of the participants didn't add a great deal. My hope is that the new series, featuring such people as Salman Rushdie and Richard Rodriguez, will be up to that pretty high standard.
The reality is that we need more -- not fewer -- options to hear thoughtful people talk about the way religious belief affects our lives, both private and public. As I've noted before, it's hard to read any news story in the paper these days that doesn't have some thread of religion running through it. The problem is we tend to get boxed into our tiny spheres of belief and are unable to be both deep in our own religious traditions and yet open to learn from others at the same time.
That combinations of depth and openness is the mandate, it seems to me, in a time when religion run amok has caused so much harm in the world. Maybe the new Moyers series can be part of the solution.
To read my latest Kansas City Star work, click here. (Just a reminder: If you generally check in here early in the day, you might want to come back later in the day to read any comments left since you left. Some days there's some really good back-and-forth. Other days y'all seem to hold your tongues.)