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BY GARY S. SMITH It’s time to watch fireworks displays, sing patriotic songs, and ruminate about our country’s rich heritage and history. It’s time to celebrate America’s national birthday. As we do so, we should recognize that millions of our ancestors, by their creative thinking, hard work, devotion to the...
BY GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION AND VALUES During Lent, the 46 days from Ash Wednesday to the day before Easter, many Christians focus on giving up or doing without something. Not eating a favorite food or drinking a preferred beverage is common. So is not participating in an...
BY GARY S. SMITH AND JANE SMITH Editor’s note: The following is a Q&A with Professor Gary S. Smith and his wife, Jane Smith, about their new book, “Suffer the Children: How We Can Help Improve the Lives of the World’s Impoverished Children.” If you would like to interview Gary...
BY GARY S. SMITH Have you ever struggled with what to do when you encounter a person on the sidewalk of a major city or standing at a busy traffic intersection with a cup in hand? Have you given such individuals money or been deterred by the prospects of what...
GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION AND VALUES Donald Trump, who has been leading the national polls for the Republican nomination since this past summer, has strong support among evangelicals. Given Trump’s beliefs, lifestyle, crude language, and some of his positions on issues, this is baffling. As Jonathan Merritt argues...
GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION & VALUES Presidents Day reflections typically commemorate the exploits of two of our larger than life chief executives whose birthdays we celebrate in February—George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. This piece instead assesses the contributions of a different American colossus—James Madison—and examines the War of 1812...
GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION & VALUES Religious deception and hucksterism is certainly not a new phenomenon. From Sinclair Lewis’ Elmer Gantry to televangelist Jim Bakker to some proponents of the Prosperity Gospel, fictional and real life examples abound. So the revelation that Kevin Malarkey fabricated his six-year old...
GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION & VALUES As we celebrate Veterans Day this year, it is instructive to consider the contributions of our presidents to our nation’s defense and military. Of America’s 43 presidents, 31 have served in the military. Ten, most notably George Washington, Andrew Jackson, Ulysses S....
GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION & VALUES On Monday the United States will celebrate one of its great festivals of civil religion as Barack Obama is inaugurated for a second time. Although nothing in the Constitution mandates it (the only things the Constitution specifies are the date and the...
GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION & VALUES Earlier this year I went to the WPXI television studio in Pittsburgh to tape an interview. The technician who escorted me inquired, “What are you here to discuss today?” When I replied, “heaven,” he asked, “Have they found it?” As he correctly...
GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION & VALUES President Obama’s recent statement on gay marriage has again thrust his religious views onto the front pages. In defending his position, Obama stressed that he and his wife were “practicing Christians” and that his stance was supported by Christ’s teaching of the...
GARY S. SMITH, CENTER FOR VISION & VALLUES As Christians around the world celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ this Easter, heaven is naturally on the minds of many. Recent polls indicate that between 75 and 90 percent of Americans believe that heaven exists, percentages that far exceed the belief...