Understanding and implementing what is acceptable and what is forbidden with regard to language with racial connotations has become a highly specialized discipline in today’s politically charged culture. Witness, for example, that one may generously donate to the United Negro College Fund, or stand in solidarity with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, but one must never refer to blacks as “negroes” or “colored people.”

Further proof that freedom of speech is increasingly under attack can be found in a recent endeavor by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. GLAAD presented a petition on Thursday to CNN for the network to prohibit guest appearances by representatives of the “anti-gay industry.”

The Mount Soledad Cross was dedicated at a San Diego park on Easter Sunday in 1954 to honor veterans of the Korean War. Atheist Phillip Paulson, along with a Jewish war veterans group, has been trying to have the cross removed since 1989.

Presbyterian churchWhile liberal do-gooders have found it difficult to hide their satisfaction and glee over the priest abuse scandals that have plagued the Catholic Church over the past several years, a similar humiliation is unfolding much closer to their own doorstep. The Presbyterian Church (USA), one of the most liberal of the nation’s mainline denominations, has found itself in the middle of a scandal over sexual abuse of minors that occurred for a number of years at overseas missions facilities run by the church. The most high-profile instance so far involves a California man who is suing the denomination, alleging that he was molested by an older boy in 1988 at a church-operated boarding house in Africa, and that church authorities on site allowed it to occur.

churchOver the past year and a half the researchers at Gallup have been taking the spiritual pulse of America, and their findings confirm what has been commonly understood for generations: Individuals who embrace a faith in God that inspires their daily behavior and attitudes are healthier, happier, and better adjusted to their environments than their nominally religious or non-religious counterparts.