News & Politics


Conflict Kitchen: Eating Our Way to Understanding

Do you realize how little we know about the countries with which we’re in conflict? Outside of the polarizing rhetoric of politicians and the narrow lens of media headlines, what do we know about countries we consider our enemies? An eatery in Pittsburgh has an innovative and savory way of addressing this. Conflict Kitchen, a takeout restaurant opened by artists Jon Rubin and Dawn Weleski, only serves food from countries the United States is in conflict with. Operating seven days a week, the restaurant rotates its menu – and its design scheme......

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New Female-Only Taxi Service Attracts Women... and Controversy

SheRides is a taxi and car service app tailored to the needs of women – an Uber by women for women. Launched in New York City and its surrounding area on September 16, SheRides provides all female drivers – sporting hot pink pashmina scarves – to exclusively female passengers. Its priority is to offer safe, reliable, and trustworthy women drivers to women passengers who feel uncomfortable being driven by men. SheRides attracts women across all demographics including women concerned about sexual harassment from male drivers, as well as women (as both drivers......

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Video: ISIS - Political Correctness and Honesty

From Odyssey Networks’ Faith on the Record series: As the world comes to grips with the threat of terrorism from ISIS, I believe this is a moment when all people must make an honest choice about who they want to be in the world, including in a war which very much has religious overtones but isn’t a war against any one religion, nor can it be allowed to become so. Please watch my video commentary below for more: Odyssey Networks tells the stories of faith in action changing the world for the......

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How an Erosion of Trust in the NYC Subway Spells Trouble for Society

Here is a story that is emblematic of so much of what is wrong in our republic. As with many cities’ transit systems, you can buy a card – in New York City it’s called a MetroCard – and add value to it so that you do not need to buy a single ride each time you travel. Inevitably, at some point you swipe your card and the dreaded words “Insufficient Fare” appear. But here is the thing, somebody has actually figured out how to insure that what is left on your......

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Video: Genocide, Religious Warfare or A Third Option

From Odyssey Networks’ Faith on the Record series: Christians are increasingly at threat of ethnic cleansing throughout the Middle East and North Africa. How do we talk about that real possibility without turning this war into a religious war? Odyssey Networks tells the stories of faith in action changing the world for the better. Their stories explore a wise range of issues including peace, tolerance, social justice and the environment. To view more of Brad’s Faith on the Record discussions, please click here....

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Video: Why We Should Ratchet Down the Ferguson Story

From Odyssey Networks’ Faith on the Record series: Unrest continues to simmer in Ferguson, Missouri since the August 9th shooting of unarmed teen Michael Brown. We privilege rage over sadness to all of our peril. And we confuse imposing order with building peace between members of different communities. Watch more of my commentary below: Odyssey Networks tells the stories of faith in action changing the world for the better. Their stories explore a wise range of issues including peace, tolerance, social justice and the environment. To view more of Brad’s Faith on......

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Understanding Why We Fight

The news keeps getting worse, be it from Ferguson, Missouri or Ukraine. In each case, a day or two of calm is followed by a new act of violence. And as that happens, it’s only natural, and perhaps even wise, to look for explanations. After all, we tend to assume that if only we could understand a problem, be it global, familial or inner-personal, we could fix it. Not so fast. Can you really fix a problem generated by a-rational thinking (not based on or governed by reason) with a purely rational......

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Albright and Condi and Gates, Oh My!

Between Israel and Gaza, Ukraine, and the mounting horror that is ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria), not to mention Afghanistan, the United States is currently involved, in one way or another, with four different wars. Not all are equally “hot”, and we are currently “only” bombing in one of them, but a quiet time in foreign policy it is not! That made this week’s opportunity to hear from two former Secretaries of State and one former Secretary of Defense, especially interesting. I sat in a tented pavilion on a sunny......

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Israeli and Palestinian Women Design New Patterns for Peace

Whatever you feel about the political biases of the 24/7 media, the fact that the only news we see about Israelis and Palestinians is of hate, violence, destruction and death makes it easy to despair about the seemingly insoluble conflict. Despair is not just the greatest sin, but it’s really a failure of human imagination. The vitriol and enmity that grows each day, as people are traumatized by war, is very real – but it is not the only story. There are plenty of Israelis and Palestinians building bridges. Hearing their stories,......

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The Weakness of Power and the Power of Weakness

“Nazis, Nazis, Nazis,” said Steve our 40 year-old, charismatic, Australian (by way of a half dozen countries) guide as we began a walking tour of Berlin, “that’s all most people think when they come to Berlin.” My family and I were in Berlin for a week – our first time in Germany – and Steve was so right. Berlin is young, hip, culturally rich, fun and edgy – and for the week we were there not fifteen minutes could go by without thinking Nazis, Third Reich, Holocaust. Memorials, museums, the guttural sound......

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