Archive for March, 2015

Are Newspapers on the Ropes?

March 10th, 2015 No comments

There is no question about it: most newspapers in the United States are on the ropes.  They are not yet down and out, but they are close to that knockout blow.  I know this, as most of you readers do, from personal experience.  Newspapers are downsizing in size and quality of paper, merging with or selling out to other newspapers or newspaper chains, printing regional editions, laying off journalists and support staff, doing away with proofreaders and newsroom editors, or simply closing their doors, selling their property to real estate developers or declaring bankruptcy.  The picture is pretty bleak.  And international statistics indicate the same development in most countries that allow freedom of the press.


Although being on the ropes is close to being down and out, there have been many times in championship struggles that the entity on the ropes is able to surprise everyone and rebound for a victory.  I believe that this is possible for today’s newspapers.  Newspapers have played a very significant role in the history of the United States of America, and freedom of the press is guaranteed by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.  Certainly every effort needs to be exerted to save our newspapers “because,” as Robert G. Kaiser wrote in an essay for the Brookings Institution, “Journalism is the craft that provides the lifeblood of a free, democratic society.” Read more…

The Devil and Lent

March 2nd, 2015 No comments

In this current age of technology and science, it is difficult for us to realize that one of the most important incidents reported in the Bible for understanding the Christian faith is about an evil spirit referred to as “Satan” or “the devil.”  The particular incident I am referring to is Jesus being tempted in the wilderness by Satan for forty days, related to us in Matthew 4:1-2, Mark 1:12-13, and Luke 4:1-2.  (FYI: “Satan” is the Hebrew proper name of the supreme leader of evil spirits opposed to God; “the devil” is the Greek rendition of the original Hebrew proper noun; both mean the same.) Read more…