Advertisement

Warning: Irrationality

BUT RELIGIOUS FUNDAMENTALISTS AREN’T THE ONLY PROBLEM By Alan Rutkowski   AN UNAPPRECIATED but dangerous consequence of the Trump era is widespread liberal/secular oversimplification of the emerging danger. In their attacks on religion, for example, the so-called New Atheists — Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Christopher Hitchens (RIP), and Sam Harris — have fostered the notion that […]

Read More

Jason Silva’s Shots of Awe

Futurist and filmmaker Jason Silva, whom the Atlantic has described as “a Timothy Leary of the Viral Video Age,” was born in Caracas, Venezuela, on this date in 1982. His mother was Ashkenazi, his father a convert to Judaism. Silva says that his family was secular and that his home was “akin to a Woody Allen film.” A passionate […]

Read More

#MeToo, Said Mother Earth

by Aaron Dorman “God gave us the Earth. We have dominion over the plants, the animals, the trees. God said, Earth is yours. Take it. Rape it. It’s yours.” –Ann Coulter, 2001 “I think that neoliberalism is what lovelessness looks like as a policy . . . it looks like water pipes leaking lead and poisoning young minds […]

Read More

George Wald, Scientist and Activist

Nobelist George Wald, who discovered that Vitamin A was a component of the retina and crucial to good eyesight, was born in New York to Jewish immigrant parents on this date in 1906. The first member of his family to attend college, Wald was doing a postgrad fellowship in Switzerland and Germany when Hitler came […]

Read More

Carl Sagan

Astronomer and science writer Carl Sagan was born in Brooklyn on this date in 1934. He was best known as the awe-inspired and awe-inspiring host and co-writer of the television series COSMOS: A Personal Voyage, and as the driving force behind NASA’s Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence program (SETI), which monitors radio signals and other possible indications […]

Read More

Joseph Rotblat

Sir Joseph Rotblat, a physicist who received the 1995 Nobel Peace Prize for his work on nuclear disarmament, was born in Poland on this date in 1908. Prior to World War II, the mostly self-taught Rotblat conducted experiments in nuclear fission. When World War II broke out, he was working at Liverpool University under James […]

Read More

The Unexploded Population Bomb

Biologist Paul R. Ehrlich, who shared with his fellow entymologist, E.O. Wilson, Sweden’s 1990 Crafoord Prize (awarded to support areas of science not awarded Nobel Prizes), was born in Philadelphia on this date in 1932. A world expert on butterflies, Ehrlich is president of the Center for Conservation Biology and Bing Professor of Population Studies […]

Read More

Embracing Technology

AUTOMATION AND A POST-SCARCITY SOCIETY by Ezra Jampole From the Spring 2017 issue of Jewish Currents   The fear of losing one’s job permeates the minds of many Americans, and resulted in the election of the most terrifying threat to democracy the nation has seen. While Republicans unfairly blame immigrants for the destruction of jobs […]

Read More

July 29: The Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment

On this date in 1972 (some sources say July 25th, others July 28th), the infamous, 40-year-old Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment, which left African-American men untreated for syphilis infection in order to trace the course of the disease, became national news when it was disclosed to the media by a social worker, Peter Buxton, whose Jewish father […]

Read More

The Shock Tactics of Alexander Grothendieck

A Brilliant Mathematician’s Moral Protest by Karen Karin Rosenberg ALEXANDER GROTHENDIECK, who died last fall, was a towering figure in mathematics who won the very top awards in his field: the Field’s Medal in 1966, the Crafoord Prize in 1988. He used those events theatrically to make moral points. In protest against Soviet policies, he […]

Read More