Glenn’s New Book – The Church is NOT Shrinking!

MODC Covers5

Are people leaving the Church in droves?

Is Christianity shrinking in the United States and around the world?

Most people believe they are because they’ve heard this news time and again from the mainline press and countless Christian leaders.

The truth is it’s not true.

In this new book, The Myth of the Dying Church, I carefully demonstrate just how untrue this is. I do so, not by drawing from a study here or a survey there, but from looking at the large and impressive work of the leading sociologists of religion. Their findings are actually quite encouraging.

Liberal churches are hemorrhaging members. Churches that are bailing on Christian orthodoxy—those denying the deity of Christ; rejecting the reality of sin; doubting the historical reality of Christ’s death and resurrection; and embracing abortion, gay, and gender politics—are all in a drastic free fall. People are leaving those churches as though the buildings were on fire. They can’t get out fast enough.

Biblical churches are holding strong, even growing. Churches that are faithfully preaching, teaching, and practicing biblical truths and conservative theology are holding stable overall. Some are seeing steady growth and others are exploding. No small number are pressed thin with the good problem of figuring out how to manage their growing crowds. You likely know of a few in your own community; perhaps you even attend one of these churches.

Church attendance is at an all-time high. More Americans, in raw numbers and as a percentage of the population, attend church today than at any other time in our nation’s history, including the colonial days. That’s hardly scary news.

More young adults attend biblically faithful churches today than attended nearly fifty years ago. According to some of the best sociological data, the percentage of young adults regularly attending evangelical and nondenominational churches has roughly doubled between 1972 and today.

Atheism and agnosticism are not growing wildly. Both have grown in the last few years, but they are an extreme minority, counting for just about 7 percent of all US adults.

The Nones are not new unbelievers. The infamous “nones”—those reporting to have no particular institutional faith—are indeed a growing category. This has been widely reported. But there is something very important to note here: they are not a new category. They are not folks who have left a once living faith but rather are those who merely had a cold or lukewarm family history of church identity and now feel more comfortable saying, “I don’t really identify with anything.” It’s not a change in belief. Instead, it’s an honest explanation for where they’ve always been.

Global growth of Christianity is booming. The number of Christians in the world today is larger than it has ever been in the history of the world and will continue to increase through the coming decades. The story here is incredibly positive. Scholars studying this phenomenon use words like explosive and mushrooming to describe Christianity’s global growth, particularly in China and Southern Asia, Africa, and South America.

Passing on Faith to Our Children is Not a Crap Shoot. Christian parents who want to build a lifelong faith in their children only need to do a few important things. Doing so is not rocket science or a secret formula that must be applied just Your chances of success are remarkably high.

The Myth is Based on Bad Theology.  It’s the Holy Spirit who runs and drives Christ’s church across time and throughout the nations. He is unstoppable, unquenchable and inherently life-giving. He is not nodding off, sickly, or on vacation. The work of His heart and very character will not be thwarted. He is God. To believe the church is dying is deny these truths and judge God either confused or a liar.

These things describe the true state of the Christian faith in America and around the world as recorded by leading sociologists of religion who employ an array of different means to study the phenomenon and who have no particular commitment or interest in reaching any specific finding. They are simply looking at the numbers as honestly as they can and reporting their findings.

The Myth of the Dying Church tells the story of these findings—examining important details, uncovering critical nuances, and explaining how conclusions are reached—and what it all means for the future of Jesus’s church and its life-giving mission in the world.

Order six copies each for all your friends, family, co-workers and neighbors. They will love you for it, so will I and my publisher really will.

Posted in atheism, christian faith, cultural analysis, culture, God, religion, sociology of religion, theology, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Yes Atlantic, What If Friendships, Not Marriage, Was at the Center of Life?

I am a vociferous magazine reader and I read a healthy diversity of them. Real magazines, the kind you turn the pages in, those you can smell and hold between your fingers, not scroll through with your finger tip. I must work hard to keep up with them all each week, but I enjoy them thoroughly. So many ideas and new things to learn about.

And the Atlantic has long been one of my favorites. Founded in 1857, it is one of the oldest continuous and most influential magazines in the world. Of course, I don’t always agree with it, but I have always found it fascinating through the last three decades of my continual subscription. That is at least until about the past few years. Now I just find it terribly predictable and uninteresting. And I came across an article this morning on their site that reminded me again just how true this is.

Entitled, “What If Friendship, Not Marriage, Was the Center of Life?”, it was trending as their most popular article for some time. I thought, “This certainly cannot be another silly piece on why marriage must be displaced by some new relational alternative!” I like to keep hope alive and believed it might actually be an insightful piece contrasting the pros and cons of two very essential kinds of human love – friendship and spousal – that enrich all of our lives, whether we are married ourselves or not. Even for those not married, we can appreciate that our parents and siblings are indeed loving friends with their spouses and not just friends. This fact enriches all of our lives in profound ways. But I was wrong. That is precisely what this article is. It just another in that tired line of “What if we free ourselves by replacing natural marriage and parenting with cool new relationships of our own choosing?” mantra. Blah, blah, blah.

It is not a completely uninteresting article in and of itself. It does highlight some various ways in which different human beings are working their way through the very real and difficult grittiness of life by forging rewarding friendships in the hopes of making it all a little easier, even in uncommon ways. Like Kami West and Kate Tillotson who met as 18-year-old Marine recruits in bootcamp. Setting them up as some sort of revolutionaries, the Atlantic says Kami and Kate “didn’t set out to transgress relationship norms.” Their new transgressive norm? They are just simply really good friends who play a super huge roll in each other’s daily lives. And they tell their respective boyfriends that Kate/Kami is central in my life and that the boy toys will just have to deal with it. There really is nothing revolutionary going on here, but the author, Rhaina Cohen, a longform podcast producer at NPR, explains, “With no lexicon to default to, people with friendships like West and Tillotson’s have assembled a collage of relationship language. They use terms such as best soul friend, platonic life partnermy person, queerplatonic partner, or Big Friendship.”

And there are Joe Rivera and John Carroll who met at a gay bar in Austin, Texas. Rivera was the emcee for a strip competition in which Carroll won the $250 cash prize. Cohen says “they felt like brothers” from the start. “Brothers that really want to hang out and be around each other,” Carroll clarified. The Atlantic explains the two men bought houses next to each other.

When Rivera became concerned that Carroll’s drug and alcohol use had gotten out of hand, he took photos of partiers entering and leaving Carroll’s house at 3 or 4 a.m. Rivera staged an intervention with Carroll’s other friends, and Carroll agreed to get help before Rivera could even begin reading aloud the two-page letter he’d written. The next day, Rivera drove Carroll to a recovery center, and cried as he filled out the paperwork.

These are sweet stories of human beings working to forge a life together, to bring meaning to each other. I have spent my working days here at Focus on the Family over the last three decades studying these very things with great interest and evaluating their own collective benefits and problems for our individual and communal lives. Sure, what if two single women are dear, platonic friends, the central people in each other’s lives, and have decided to buy a house together? Such relationships can be wonderful and richly rewarding. I actually have a colleague here at Focus who decided to do precisely that in her later 40s. It is a very delightful and highly workable arrangement for them. These are the kinds of stories the piece tells. But the article’s problem is its editorial direction.

And it is precisely this fact of the article that disproves its own thesis. What if both marriage and friendship, along with creating and parenting the next generation of humanity, are each two of the richest spices of life? Why would the Atlantic feel the need to pit them against each other as black and white, either/or choices where we must decide one or the other? That is a rhetorical question. We know their game and too many of us have long grown tired of the ideology at work here, and thus, my exhaustion with the Atlantic. Stop attacking those things like natural marriage which have long and universally proven themselves essential. You’ve gotten too predictable and uninteresting.

Of course, friendship is one of the profound treasures of a happy life and it would be unimaginable and unlivable without them. Who can disagree? But there is a very good reason why marriage, and not the founding of a new friendship regardless of how deeply meaningful they might become, is a major life event that people announce and receive with great fanfare. They even make time on their schedules long in advance to travel great distances at large expense to witness the ceremony that founds the fact of marriage. That is because wedlock establishes something, something we have long referred to as an institution for good reason. It’s why we all celebrate, regardless of our religion, nationality, politics or socio-economic status, unspeakably beautiful milestones like this, the world’s oldest married couple. And “world’s longest, deeply intimate friendship” is certainly to be prized, but enduring marriages are noted and celebrated by all across highly distinct cultures because we all appreciate they build things larger than themselves.

And that is why, as the late Southern novelist Pat Conroy famously said, “Each divorce is the death of a small civilization.” And while the end of a friendship can be terribly tragic, it is simply that, the end of the thing itself. That is not the case with marriage and the family it establishes. The author hints at this dramatic difference in importance when she admits, “Intimate friendships don’t come with shared social scripts that lay out what they should look like or how they should progress.” Indeed, and there’s a reason for this. These scripts and structures are needed when something larger than the sum of the parts is being established like we find in universally practiced and celebrated social institution that is human marriage.

This author and the editors at the Atlantic well know the specialness of marriage. The Atlantic carefully detailed it in a profound way in April 1993, explaining how the robust weight of social science literature persuasively demonstrates that dismissing the married, mother-family family “is harmful to children and dramatically undermines our society” as their most popular and republished cover story in the magazine’s long history put it. Yes, that was a long time ago, but the research has only become stronger and more detailed in the intervening 27 years. The Atlantic spoke to it again in another wildly popular article in March 2008, Lori Gottlieb’s Marry Him, subtitled “The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough” which was illustrated with this counterintuitive image.

Marriage is something special and certainly not just one relational form among many.

The fact that few of us, despite our politics, religion or life-philosophy, would be content telling others, “My parents never married, they’re just really, really good friends,” illuminates the silliness of the Atlantic’s “What if friendships could replace marriage?” story here. Marriage builds things that no other relationship does, things that every society requires. The ridiculousness of the article is crafting these two great life riches – spousal love and deep friendship – into competitors. Life needs both and each do and produce very different and wonderful things and life would literally be unlivable without either. So, let’s celebrate both and resist the foolish idea of pitting them against each other.

Posted in commentary, cultural analysis, feminism, marriage, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Do Hormone Treatments and Surgeries Cure Gender Dysphoria? A Look at the Latest Research

gender dysphoria

Increasingly, parents, grandparents, school administrators and teachers are being pressured to support hormone treatments and even surgeries for children, teens and young adults who suffer from gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria is a condition where an individual asserts their own self-perception of their gender is at odds with their physical body. It’s what compels a person to identify as transgender.

It is important to note that most children who suffer from gender dysphoria come out of it, or desist in clinical terminology, by the time they reach puberty. It is seldom a permanent condition. Only 2 to 27 percent of children suffering from gender dysphoria persist with it beyond puberty. Some of the world’s leading clinicians in this field working from one of the leading clinics in the Netherlands explain, “The results unequivocally showed that gender dysphoria remitted after puberty in the vast majority of children.” This demonstrates that gender dysphoria and transgenderism is a perception problem of the mind that can be successfully corrected. It is not a problem of the objective body itself.

Given the seriousness of the condition and the way it afflicts the individual, every responsible adult involved in the life of a child struggling with gender dysphoria must ask this question: What does the research actually say about the effectiveness of hormone treatment or surgery in alleviating the distress of the gender dysphoric patient? The answer is far simpler and more direct than most assume.

To date, the best research on the topic tells us there is no indication that hormone treatments nor surgeries are effective in alleviating the mental distress of gender dysphoric individuals. In fact, the American Journal of Psychiatry explained it this way October 2019,

“Despite professional recommendations to consider gender affirming medical interventions for transgender individuals who experience gender incongruence, the effect of such interventions on long-term health is largely unknown.”

The demonstrable effectiveness of what medical professionals have been recommending for such patients is to date: Largely. Unknown. You can see for yourself where they make this statement right here:

This means that medical professionals have been recommending surgeries and hormonal treatments to children and adults without any actual data indicating that such treatments are actually effective. These professionals have just been assuming they make people better.

This article claimed their new research changed all this, finally establishing that surgery is shown to be effective, even while admitting their research provided no support for hormonal protocols. It is critical to recognize these scholars were working from a truly impressive, world-class, gold-standard population data set of Swedish citizens. Thus, their claim that gender-reassignment surgery (or gender-affirming as they put it) did show promise for increased mental health for gender dysphoric patients was highly significant. As such, this news got reported far and wide in the mainstream and medical press.

However, it was later shown their data, in fact, did not indicate support for surgery. After its October 2019 publication, the American Journal of Psychiatry received a number of letters to the editor from other researchers and clinicians challenging the conclusion. The journal conducted its own independent analysis of the original data, printing a correction in August 2020 explaining that in truth, “the [new] results demonstrated no advantage of surgery in relation to subsequent mood or anxiety disorder-related health care visits or prescriptions or hospitalizations following suicide attempts in that comparison.” (emphasis added) You can read the correction here:

This means that the prevailing assumption that surgery and hormones are the compassionate and scientifically backed course of treatment for gender dysphoria in children and adults is still in search of any research-based support. And this major study using an impeccable gold-standard data set was well situated to establish such a connection if it is was possible. But it showed no such affect, even in the highly trans-affirming culture of Sweden. As such, it is unlikely any support will be found.

Thus, parents, grandparents, pediatricians, school administrators and teachers who are uncomfortable with pressure to subject children under their care to such serious, deeply consequential and often irreversible procedures are actually the ones who have science on their side. This latest research is a highly compelling encouragement for them to remain and stand strong, stiffening their voices and resolve as the ones who are the informed and compassionate advocates for children (and adults) struggling with gender dysphoria.

Posted in commentary, cultural analysis, culture, debate, gender; masculinity, lgbt, science, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Black Portland Police Officer Shocked at Racist Things Said to Him by BLM Protestors

Officer Jakhary Jackson

A black Portland police officer sat down for an interview to share his experiences covering Black Lives Matter protests every evening in Portland for the past few months. He has some very strong feelings about what he has been seeing there.

Officer Jakhary Jackson is a nine-year veteran of the Portland Bureau of Police. He grew up in the neighborhoods where the protests have been happening and has extended family there.

He doesn’t seem to care for what he has been seeing night after night from BLM protestors. He says it’s largely been privileged white kids who know nothing about his people, their struggles and their community coming to neighborhoods that are not theirs to burn stuff, break things, cause trouble, incite violence and tell the black people there what they should do. His word for it: “Disgusting.”

You can read a summary of his interview and view it in full here.

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Is Science Our One True Source of Finding Truth?

scientistsWe are hearing, especially in the midst of the COVID crisis, that science is the only true and reliable means of finding truth. But is this true? Ironically, the statement itself is not one of science but philosophy, even religion. It is actually a new type of fundamentalism

Is Christianity “anti-science”? We are hearing this a great deal as well today. Such an accusation demonstrates a very mistaken view of the history of both science and Christianity.

I address these issues in this new article I have over at The Federalist.

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Some Nice Praise in the Midst of Curses

I am well used to getting trashed on the internet. It comes with the job. And truth be told, I started to enjoy it long ago. So I am not used to seeing something written up about me that is actually kind. Here is one of those. I’ll take all I can get.

Thank you Sam A. Andreades.

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My New Installation at the Met

It’s a little embarrassing to talk about. But it’s super exciting news, so here it is. The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York has accepted one of my pieces. The. Metropolitan. Museum. Of. Freakin. Art. 

Not only one of my pieces, but the first work I’ve ever done. How does that happen?

Well, let me tell you. In late June, I get a call one afternoon from Phyllis Neusbaum-Finley, head curator of the Met’s “Way Beyond Post Modernism” collection and asked if I was interested in discussing their desire for one of my pieces. It was kinda like when the President of the United States, the Pope, or David Lee Roth calls you to chat and you think it’s your buddy Derek pranking you. But you can’t hang up of course. What if…?

So I ask Ms. Neusbaum-Finley which of my works she’s interested in. (You can’t be a player if you don’t sound like a player, right?) She said she’d heard about the conceptual piece I was calling “Empty Space: A Phenomenological Consideration of Post Structuralist Potentiality.” She said they wanted to make it central in her collection and asked what it would take to acquire it. Totes exploding inside, I played it super cool on the outside. I told her I appreciated her call but was meeting friends for nachos supreme and drinks in just a sec and “could we talk tomorrow”? I called her back three day’s hence. Coy worked.

The installation debuted October 1. Let me tell you about it. This is it. I think it turned out just I had envisioned it down to the Nth degree.

Met Installation

The viewer not only views it, but actually inhabits it. Ontologically, existentially, metaphysically.

I’ve always dreamed of working with empty space as my medium. The work derives inspiration from the experimental intersection of the Hyper Minimalist and Post Content schools. It calls us to consider that art can be literally nothing, for nothing is the biggest something there is. It forces us to ask whether empty space itself and the potentiality it provides can be the purest of all art? It’s a rhetorical question of course. It’s not polluted by anything. It just is. It speaks for itself. It needs no defense.

My work doesn’t force a culturally fixed conception of reality (or anything else for that matter) upon the viewer. It holds no one captive with its expectations or need for interpretation. I resist enforcing the experiential domination of my own limited life interpretation. Even worse, that perspective is historically and culturally determined by my white, heterocentric, gender-binary, male privilege. I’m a man who now gets the senior discount at fast food establishments simply because I’ve lived longer than others. Such favoritism in the capitalist system cannot help but infect any physical art I would actually create myself. So I refuse to use all this privilege as a blunt object of colonialist structuralism upon the intriniscally oppressed who lack the sophistication to realize they are being played by everyone else’s art. It’s my small, humble offering to continuing human evolution.

The power of my art is not so much in what it does say, but in what it doesn’t. It’s mutism. No, Proto-voice challenged. 

I’ve become increasingly troubled by every bit of art ever created and thus it’s artists. The lines. Colors. Structure. The material physicality. Light. Its demand for perception. By their very nature, they are all limiting, controlling, defining, and despotically oppresive. That each piece of art ever created declares “I am this and not that” is self-evident. Every piece of art casts its own judgement upon every other. It’s true. Joseph Havel’s Veil VI denounces Jasper John’s White Flag as far too ambitious and thus imperialistically elitist. 

Duchamp was a power-hungry anarchist. He thought (knew!) his Readymades grabbed his viewers by the throat, slapped them around and dumped their bruised, exhausted bodies where he found them. He believed they were all the better for it. Warhol? Ditto. Pollock. He was particularly thuggish. They each proclaimed “Beauty is an illusion. Anything can be art.” If you happen to see Duchamp’s Bottle Dryer as beauty, he’ll have something to say about it.

Their disciples are the artistic equivalents of the sexualized power structure that required the intervention of #MeToo. They are patriarchal. Self-indugent. Abusive. Controlling. Consumers. In fact, every piece of art ever created is precisely this, however you might choose to define art. In its mere physical materialistic presence it is unavoidlably phallic. It inserts itself, presses itself in upon reality without the viewers clear, spoken or written consent.  All art rapes the sensibilities and does so to the perverted, pleasurable delight of its artist. It’s so obvious, become such a part of art that its no surprise we’ve looked right past it until now. Lee Krasner, Frida Kahlo, Georgia O’Keefe, Mary Cassat and their sisters? They get no pass here. They were either willing participants in the oppression or unwitting dupes. Either fact is without excuse or defense. 

As sure as I’m an artist, I must object. I refuse to be a part of it, ergo, my present work.

My work breaks us free from the unspeakable abuses of the content-based artists. Pure space is the future of what art and truth are. It is true freedom, pure subjectivism. It is the only form that respects the experience, nay, the dignity and determinative self autonomy, of the viewer. Space truly makes no judgments, demands no conclusions, requests no expectations. Its nothingness harms nothing. It should not be missed that it is the only art form that solves our present apocalyptic problems of climate change, the destruction of the Amazon rainforest, plastic straws and people who refuse to use another’s proper pronouns. Its transformative potential is limitless because the art form is. Literally.

And no, it doesn’t bother me in the least that people haven’t been coming to see my work. 

Met Installation 2

I do not take it personally that they don’t appreciate it. So what if they walk by the installation Ihave been working on for the last decade as if it were just nothing.

Met Installation 3

I know what they’re thinking: “Uhm, I wonder what’s going to go here?” That’s their interpretation of my work and theirs is just as legitimate as mine. What I care about is that I got them to think and think about space, that space points us toward the potential of the future and our individual and collective places in that future. For the humble artist, that is a good day’s work.  

Likewise, I don’t mind that the janitorial staff comes every other week to dust mop the floor, thinking it’s just another floor to keep clean. The fact is the space provides them the palate upon which to declare to the universe that human labor, regardless of how small and tedious, has great dignity. Isn’t this what Marxism was all about anyway? It provides the stage for their own phenomenological performance art. And their humble mops actually transform the art itself. Its holistically participitory. What artist cannot be touched by eliciting that kind of experience with andreaction from the human soul? Not me.

So please, come see my piece, let it transform you as it transforms the totality of art, past, present, and future.  It runs through Spring 2020. But sure to purchase the exhibit’s official t-shirt on the way out. The uninitiated will think it’s just a $45 white Fruit of the Loom textile, but now you know it is so much more. It’s a declaration of independence from the physical assault of content-based art. 

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Presentation on The Myth of the Dying Church at Focus on the Family

This summer I was able to give a presentation on my new book The Myth of the Dying Church to my colleaugues at Focus on the Family.

I wanted to share it with all of you here. Enjoyand you are welcome to share it with others. 🙂








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Pro-Lifers, Senator Gillibrand Equates You With Racists and Anti-Semites

Gillibrand Abortion


This is just one more example among many of how extremist and tone-deaf leading abortion advocates are.

Yesterday, New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand told (watch video here) the editorial board of the Des Moines Register,

I think there are some issues that have such moral clarity, that we have, as a society, decided that the other side is unacceptable.

Absolutely breathtaking. Abortion is an unquestionable moral good? How is that for a new fundamentalism?

“…[W]e as a society have decided that [being pro-life] is not acceptable…” Oh really? Half the nation didn’t get the memo Senator.

And without hesitation,  with full conviction, she then compares the pro-life position with being racist or anti-semetic.  That is as vile as it is ignorant.

But she doesn’t stop there. She says the pro-life position is only driven by religious conviction. Sorry pro-lifers, you know nothing of science and reason. A very effecient (but terribly dishonest) way to dismiss your opponents.

Senator Gillibrnad has no idea what she’s talking about and does so shamelessly. She might try meeting a few of her pro-life constituents. Ask them what they actually believe and why before telling us what we believe and why.

The pro-abortion leadership has found themselves in a deep pit because of their tone-deaf radicalness – such as rejecting ANY, even the smallest, limitation on abortion – and they just keep digging. I think they should continue.

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No, Coal Miners and Mary Poppins are Not Racists

The latest installment in “Reality is Getting Crazier Than the Onion” involves coal miners and Mary Poppins. Word is, they are both racists.

A man named Rashaad Thomas has an editorial over at about being traumatically triggered while out for an evening at a Phoenix restaurant.  The problem? This picture which hung on the wall at this establishment.


The problem? Well let me have Mr.Thomas tell you himself.

For me, the coal miners disappeared and a film honored for its artistic merit, despite being the most racist propaganda films ever, D.W. Griffith’s “Birth of a Nation” (1915) surfaces, in which white actors appeared in blackface. The white owner saw coal miners in the photograph. Therefore, it was not offensive.

Fact: The photograph shows coal miners’ faces covered in soot. The context of the photograph is not the issue.

Note this line: The white owner saw coal miners in the photograph. Therefore, it was not offensive. Is blackface offensive? Of course, it is worse than offensive. Are miners offensive? They were victims too, let us not forget. They worked long hours for pennies in the unsafest of conditions. That soot on their faces also lined their in their lungs, killing many at far too young an age, leaving their family destitute. But never mind all that. Thomas wants us to know that context is not at issue. How dismissive. Thomas continues.

At the downtown Phoenix restaurant, my concern that the photograph of men in blackface was a threat to me and my face and voice were ignored.

A business’ photograph of men with blackened faces culturally says to me, “Whites Only.” It says people like me are not welcome.

The operators of that downtown restaurant can choose to take the photograph down, leave it up or create a title card with an intention statement. No matter their decision, I think the photograph should be taken down — sacrificing one image for the greater good.

Get that. The photo of the miners said to him that this restaurant was the equivalent of “Whites Only” establishments from the genuinely evil days of segregation. That picture said he was not welcome there.

Think about that a moment. How did he see the picture? He was there. In the restaurant. The (White!) manager even spoke to him. Mr. Thomas was not tossed out, asked never to return. Apparently he was welcome there. His recommendation as a compromise is to have the owner of the restaurant put a notation on the picture explaining that these are not a group of White men antagonizing and shaming Black people, but coal miners whose faces got dirty because … well, they’re coal miners. That will let everyone know to rest easy, the picture is not a nasty group of Al Jolsons.

But only if this was just a ridiculous one-off. The New York Times noted this week that Mary Poppins might well be a racist as well. Trigger warning: Here is the picture they used as evidence.


No, those smudges of soot on her face are not just innocent residue from her dancing with the chimney sweeps. Poppins is a racist staring back at a racist.

Now, two main points here. One minor, the other massive. First, these are seemingly serious writers making these accusations. Serious journalists and their editors thought these were serious stories, worthy of their valuable print real-estate. Which leads us to the massive issue at play here. If such things can be called racist, worthy of moral outrage, then the nastiness of actual racism loses its very important meaning and moral offense. That is the real crime here.

Mr. Thomas and the New York Times might do well to remember the moral of a story about a young boy and a wolf.

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