Articles from May, 2017

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Massacre in Manchester

manchester bomb

ISIS has struck again, in the heart of Britain, as a suicide bomber detonated a ‘sophisticated’ device as young concertgoers were leaving an ‘Ariana Grande’ concert in Manchester. At least 22 have been killed, and dozens more injured. Details are of course still emerging, and in the meantime we must pray for the victims, for the eternal rest of those who have died, for healing for those who survived, and that God may have mercy on thei perpetrators of this ... (Continue reading)

If you are looking for some holiday reading, I have an article published this morning in Crisis magazine, on artificial intelligence.  Peruse as you will, and comments are always, or almost always, welcome. Peace and joy to all. (Continue reading)

The Queen’s Birthday

victoria

A very joyful Victoria Day to all our Canadian readers!  A statuatory federal holiday, which was originally instituted to celebrate the birthday of Queen Victoria (May 24, 1819), Canadians celebrate the first 'long weekend' of summer which contains the Monday before May 24th.  Hence, its colloquial term of 'May 24', which also has not so subliminal connections to a 24 pack of beer, a beverage often enjoyed during this time. Canada is technically a 'Dominion', still under the governance of Her ... (Continue reading)

Fell On A Black Day: A Reflection on Chris Cornell’s Suicide

chris cornell

Chris Cornell, the frontman of the Seattle grunge rock bands Soundgarden and Audioslave was declared dead on May 17.  According to later developments throughout May 18th, further information revealed that the cause of death was suicide by hanging. His suicide was not only shocking to his fans but even his wife, Vicky, who allegedly stated that Chris had not demonstrated any signs of depression prior to his final concert in Detroit on May 17 with Soundgarden. Chris was one of ... (Continue reading)

The Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

art intel

As a mathematician, my field of research rarely brings me into contact with controversial ethical topics.  However, recent developments in the area of Artificial Intelligence (AI) threaten to alter the neutrality of my profession. AI refers to complex computer algorithms designed to act or mimic human behaviors such as learning or pattern recognition.   Like most technical buzzwords, AI has received more hype in recent years than it deserves (modern society is notorious for overplaying new technologies). Nonetheless, AI is a powerful ... (Continue reading)

Sad and foreboding news indeed from the University of Saint Thomas in Houston:  The administration has threatened within weeks to 'reorganize' or 'close' both the English and Philosophy departments, citing 'financial' considerations, an  unheard of, and, at face value, manifestly unjust situation. The University of Saint Thomas is not only one of the few holdouts in the move to streamline everything in the modern university into a functional S.T.E.M. focus (science, technology, engineering, mathematics), turning students into zombie-esque automatons ... (Continue reading)

Pope Benedict, Silence and Cardinal Sarah

benedict and sarah

I just came across a brief commentary by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, on Robert Cardinal Sarah's new book, The Power of Silence: Against the Dictatorship of Noise.  What the Pope Emeritus writes here will comprise an afterword in future editions, and I am very happy to see Benedict still writing from his seclusion, his mind sharp as ever. The principal point the Pope and Cardinal make is on the necessity of silence, so that we can listen to God, to hear ... (Continue reading)

The Eternal Perspective of Pope Saint John I

Pope John I

Today is the feast of Pope Saint John I (470-526), the first Pope to visit Constantinople, on an ambassadorial mission to Emperor Justin on behalf of the Arian King Theodoric, now ruler of the Western empire.  The purpose of the mission was to mitigate Justin's decrees against Arians, a fourth-century heresy which denied the divinity of Christ, condemned by two ecumenical councils, but which still lingered in the Church, particularly amongst Germanic 'barbarian' converts like Theodoric. Pope John made the arduous ... (Continue reading)

Cultural Appropriation and the Shriveling of Free Speech

irish cultural app

The days of free speech, as it was so quaintly called, fought for through the ages, seem to be drawing ever-closer to a sad and final close:  You may have read recently of Dr. Jordan Peterson, professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, who has adamantly refused to use 'gender neutral' pronouns, a direct affront to the Inquisitors of the new orthodoxy, which will brook no opposition. Fortunately for him, Dr. Peterson is tenured, with a secure source of income, ... (Continue reading)

The Pope, Fatima and Medjugorje

brendan

In his recent pilgrimage to Fatima, the Holy Father, in canonizing two of the young seers, Jacinta and Francesco, delivered a fine homily on the mysterious woman the children saw, whom they, in their innocence, knew to be the Mother of God: We have a Mother!” Pope Francis exclaimed, continuing, ... (Continue reading)

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