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Jason Hines

Gnats and Camels

This past weekend, I read with great interest an in-depth look at the First Baptist Church in Luverne, Alabama, published by The Washington Post. The goal of the piece seemed clear. A deep examination of this one church could establish it as a microcosm for evangelical support of Trump. Trump enjoys no greater support than among white evangelical Christians—at 77%.

The Irony of Empire

There is a certain sadness, a disappointment, an anger, and a rage that comes from focusing on the idea that it was ever the policy of our nation to purposefully and intentionally separate children from their parents and indefinitely lock them in cages.

Church Folk

Over the past couple months, a statement has been working its way around social media with regard to church attendance. Although not always the same, it goes something like this – “Stop using ‘church folk’ as an excuse to not attend church. There are messy people in the club, but you still go.” The more I saw this statement, and seeing others support the idea, it began to bother me.

Church-State and the Role of the Prophet

Several years ago I had the pleasure of meeting Dr. James Wood at a reception when I was a PhD student at Baylor University. I am not sure if Wood is well-known in academia (though he should be), but at Baylor he is well respected. Wood was the first director of the J.M. Dawson Institute of Church-State Studies at Baylor University (where I studied), guiding the Institute from 1958-1973 and then again from 1980-1995. A room in the Institute is named after him, and his picture is everywhere.

How to Win Friends and Influence People

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Why Black History?

It seems that at some point every February, someone will question the meaning, purpose, and existence of Black History Month.1 The argument usually starts with a discussion of the existence of race as a social construct and ends with the prescription that racism would end if Black people would stop talking about it so much.2 Despite my admitted bias, I think that Black History Month continues to have value—not only for Black people in this country, but for all of us.

On Remaining Silent

Unless you mercifully chose to unplug for the last week or so, you are well familiar with Donald Trump’s racist, xenophobic, White supremacist comments in the week before Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. I am not here to debate the obvious.

A New (Old) Resolve

I am not usually one for New Year’s Resolutions. To be honest, I have trouble sticking with anything when I am artificially manufacturing dedication to a new pursuit. As such resolutions of this type do not normally appeal to me. However, as I outlined in this space last month, I am struggling with aspects of my spiritual family as we come to the close of a new year and so I am willing to try something new in an effort to start 2018 off on the right foot.

We Are Family

Through a quirk of fate, I am tasked with writing the piece that posts on Spectrum on Thanksgiving. I am sure that I’ve talked before about how much I enjoy Thanksgiving. It is by far my favorite holiday of the year. Not only does it have the best food, but for me, this holiday is the one that I most closely connect with the concept of family. I have vivid memories of my childhood and teenage years, when the family would descend on my house like a swarm and we would spend the day laughing and eating and watching football.

Serious Problems and Serious People

A couple of nights ago, my eyes fell on one of my favorite movies, The American President (1995).

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