From the Senate in the 1970s to the presidential campaign trail in 2020, Joe Biden has a long record of going where political pressures push him—and right now they’re pushing him aggressively leftward
Columnists Remarkable Providences
I recently flipped through a mess of Time and Newsweek covers and saw that most of them concerned humanistically salvational news: five ways to covet more successfully, 666 ways to worship yourself, that type of stuff. WORLD can learn from such marketing approaches. Among our subscribers are many young moms and dads who are probably desperate for parenting tips. So here are the three best of many that I received over the Internet several years ago (I don't remember from whom): "1. Hollow out a melon. Make a small hole in the side. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side. Now get a bottle of baby food and attempt to spoon it into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane. Continue until half the bottle is gone. Tip the rest into your lap, making sure that a lot of it falls on the floor. You are now ready to feed a 7-month-old baby. "2. Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems: First buy an octopus and a string bag. Attempt to put the octopus into the string bag so that none of the arms hang out. Time allowed for this-all morning. "3. Forget the sports car. Buy a family car. And don't imagine that it will be spotless and shining. Family cars don't look like that. Buy a chocolate ice cream bar and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there. Get a quarter. Stick it in the cassette player. Take a family-size packet of chocolate cookies. Mash them down the back seats. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car. There. Perfect." Well, we all know that it's not perfect- but it's good. With all the aggravation, is having children worthwhile? Most of our readers, I suspect, say "of course," and that's what I'd say-I would not have missed a moment of it. (Well, maybe some moments.) Raising children is hard, but it's worth the sacrifice. So is political involvement. Some conservative Christians, frustrated by recent events, are talking of withdrawing from politics. I pray that this will not be the case. Christians are a minority in this country, so of course much that should be done will not be done. Even during the Revolutionary era, Christians like Samuel Adams and Patrick Henry built coalitions with libertarians. Our situation is tougher today, since America's biblical base has been chipped away at for years. The childcare instructions came my way only once, but as a professor I've received a dozen times Internet memos listing things I should remember about today's college students, such as: Instead of growing up with three or four stations, they've grown up with cable. They cannot fathom not having a remote control. They have Walkmans, personal music wherever they go. Many are the children of divorce or single parenting. They have never known a time without legal and frequent abortion. Today's students, in short, have lived their whole lives in a pro-choice environment, whether it's TV, music, marriage, or pregnancy. The upbringing of most has been postmodern, with no clear sense of right and wrong. The most applicable advertising slogan of the past 25 years, whether relating to hamburgers or to life and death, is "Have it your way." How then shall we teach? I've started a class called Journalism and Religion, and I recently gave incoming students a largely multiple-choice quiz concerning basic Bible literacy. The average score was 33 percent; since guessing can produce about 25 percent, those results are not outstanding. When we say to most of these students, in relation to abortion or many other issues, Thou shalt not because God says so, the result is blank stares or incredulous glances. What does it mean to work politically in such an environment? It means that-and this is not from the Internet, but from an old country song-we might work our fingers to the bone, and what'll we get? Bony fingers. But God did not call us to a life of ease. We have points of contact with tens of millions of Americans who have witnessed the failure of secular liberalism. So let's get busy and leave it to Him to bring about results. By the way, I'm trying to walk the above talk by giving informal advice to one of the contenders for the GOP nomination. My partisanship leads me to withdraw temporarily from the editing of matters concerning the current presidential campaign. But WORLD will not give up; we'll continue to report the political news that is fit to print, even though we may read it and weep.