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Author: John Pavlovitz

COVID is Over: The pandemic is no longer a concern for those who have died and those who deny it still exists

COVID is over. That’s the single refrain of Conservative Americans right now. They shout it in red-faced, profanity-laden diatribes at the meetings of beleaguered school boards. They embody it as they stridently parade unmasked into local businesses waiting for someone to confront them so they can unload a prepared verbal assault. They pepper it throughout antagonistic social media posts to their constituents, church members, employees, and social circles. They parrot it in workplace break rooms, gathered around workout equipment at the gym, and sitting in crowded car repair waiting rooms. These oppressed and exhausted victims are sick of talking...

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How a generation of Americans went from fighting Reagan’s “Evil Empire” to praising Trump’s “Sugar Daddy”

Watching the slow and steady Russian advance toward Ukraine over recent weeks, a stomach-turning series of thoughts took up residence in my head… Americans are not going to side with Putin, are they? I mean, there is no way that will be their position, will it? My MAGA-leaning friends, Republican politicians, even the most morally-vacant Right Wing Network hosts and pundits would not go that far, would they? Sure, they voted for and fell prostrate before a spineless, amoral weakling who has showered the Russian dictator with effusive praise for decades. And yes, they repeatedly turned a blind eye...

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Walking Wounded: When each day feels like a funeral for the living with memorials to all that has been lost

Each day is a day of mourning for millions of Americans. You can see the bereaved everywhere you look. hey may not be dressed in black or sitting in a church pew or tearfully standing graveside or in the back of slow-moving cars with headlights flashing, but they are deeply grieving nonetheless. They are people who have lost someone they dearly love, though not to death but to something else, something much less expected, something much more unnatural. They have lost them to the knowledge of how unlike they now are; to a moral disconnect that has rendered their...

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Dangerous Books: Perhaps Bible-believing Conservative Christians should consider banning the Bible

A Tennessee school board recently voted to ban “Maus,” a Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic novel about the Holocaust from their eight grade curriculum. This has become a familiar tactic of Republican parents, politicians, and pastors, working through local school boards to edit out vital creative works and voices from school curriculums, in the name of protecting children. In reality, it is continuing the time-honored Right-wing tradition of raising them to be historically unaware and racially intolerant by redacting the story they are told about the world. The incessant outrage over Critical Race Theory is the most current and brazen assault...

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The rejection of empathy: Why MAGA Republicans would have canceled Jesus for His ministry of love

MAGAs like to tell us there is a “War on Christmas.” They are right. The truth is, Jesus would not have stood a chance in MAGA America. They would have cancelled him immediately. When he told them to love their neighbor as themselves, they would have screamed at him to go back where he came from and spit anti-Muslim, anti-Semitic epithets from behind anonymous message board Nazi avatars, raising defiant middle fingers in his face. When Jesus pleaded with them to welcome the stranger and embrace the outcast and receive the refugee, Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham, and Sean Hannity...

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Year In Review 2021: The Biblical irony of Christians who denounce the message of Christ

2021 began a second year with the deadly coronavirus pandemic, and the near collapse of American Democracy. Even with a vaccination for COVID-19, much of the turbulence from 2020 continued because of weaponized politics. That social trauma aggravated the public health crisis, and the economy’s struggle to recover. While the year did not present the same risks of physical injury for journalism as the previous, the editorial staff of Milwaukee Independent experienced many difficult challenges in the process of reporting the news and preserving those conditions with images. The Year In Review (YIR) series has evolved from a simple...

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