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Author: John Pavlovitz

Fulfilling Juneteenth: Why many Black Americans are still awaiting Emancipation after 157 years

On June 19th 1865, Federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas to declare the emancipation of all Americans, of every slave being freed. The Emancipation Proclamation had been issued two-and-a-half years earlier by President Lincoln, but as a result of the geographic fractures created by the war, many strongholds of institutionalized racism existed. Texas was the final area of this nation to surrender to this particular bend of the arc of the moral universe toward racial justice — and someone had to forcefully bring them the news they had refused to come to terms with: the war was over. 59...

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The War on Children: Maybe Republican politicians would passionately protect kids if they were guns

It is a real shame that school children are not guns. If school children were guns, Conservatives would treat them with kid gloves. They would be ever so careful with their words so as not to cause offense to those who love them. They would exercise the rarest of restraint to avoid angering them; couching their words in every moment, being the closest thing to decent they ever are. They would suddenly find compassion for them. If school children were guns, Republican politicians would passionately protect them. They would go to bat for them and plead for them and...

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Unhealthy Relationships: How to love the people we no longer even like

The most common question people ask me when we talk either in person or virtually, is essentially a variation on a single theme: “How do I love someone I no longer like?” They have recently realized something about a friend, family member, or partner that they simply cannot reconcile with the person they once knew and loved: a theological belief, political affiliation, or stance on a social issue that is so far beyond what they consider within the bounds of decency. In many cases, these people have attempted for years to navigate these differences with difficult conversations or with...

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Invalid Opinions: Rejection of aid to Ukraine shows there are not two legitimate sides in every situation

Recently a stranger on social media was defending Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s disturbing and steadfast support of Russian President Vladimir Putin, along with the continual flood of atrocities being committed in Ukraine. When I pressed the self-identified Christian man and questioned how a faith-based argument could be made for this kind of advocacy, he left a reply I’ve received a few thousand times in similar situations: “Oh, you Liberals are so tolerant, unless someone disagrees with you!” Yeah, that’s not how this works. One of the greatest lies people propagate is that all opinions are valid: that every...

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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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