Episode 17: TBJE 2.0

August 9, 2017

This week Luciano and Juhem reflect on the first 16 weeks of the show. They discuss their favorite moments and argue about what can be improved. They also announce some changes in format.

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Episode 16: Trinity Lutheran

August 2, 2017

This week Luciano and Juhem discuss the recently decided SCOTUS case Trinity Lutheran v. Comer. We debate the merits of the case, discuss the nuanced differences in opinion between justices, and wonder what's next in church-state jurisprudence with Utica College political science professor Daniel Tagliarina.

Links

Trinity Lutheran v. Comer

A Major Church-State Ruling That Shouldn't Have Happened (Garrett Epstein, The Atlantic)

Written by Professor Tagliarina

Free Exercise on the Playground

How Roberts Blurs Church and State in Trinity Lutheran Case

Various Interpretations of First Amendment in Trinity Lutheran Case

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Episode 15: America Last

July 26, 2017

This week Luciano discusses how the world view’s America in the Trump era looking at a recent Pew Global poll conducted around the G20 meeting where Trump ranks last among the 4 main leaders of the G20 (China, Germany, Russia) in terms of confidence. Juhem analyzes some of the global public opinion while also finding time to discuss global First Ladies.

Related Links

U.S. Image Suffers as Publics Around World Question Trump’s Leadership (Pew Global Attitudes & Trends)

Tracking U.S. favorability and confidence in the U.S. president, 2002 to 2017 (Interactive Chart by Pew Global)

First Lady Incidents

Poland (Vanity Fair)

Japan (The Hill)

USA (Boston Globe)

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Episode 14:Latino/a Pentecostal Identity

July 19, 2017

Juhem and Luciano explore Latinx identity with Dr. Arlene Sanchez-Walsh, Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Asuza Pacific University. Toptic include: navigating identity as an ethnic minority in the country and a religious minority in the community, "reverse" missions from Latin America to the USA, sociological explanations of Pentecostal conversion.

About the guest

Arlene M. Sánchez-Walsh, Ph.D., is associate professor of religious studies and the author of the award-winning book Latino Pentecostal Identity: Evangelical Faith, Self, and Society (Columbia University Press, 2003). She has authored more than a dozen articles and book chapters on the subject of Latino/a Pentecostalism, and has served as a media expert for outlets such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and “On Being” with Krista Tippett, and served as an expert on Latino/a religious history for the PBS series “God in America.” Sánchez-Walsh’s current writing projects include a textbook on Pentecostalism in America, and a monograph on Latinos/as and the prosperity gospel. Her current research is on the rise of nonbelief among Latinos/as.

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Episode 13: The Curse of the Democrats

July 12, 2017

Luciano and Juhem discuss the recent special elections to replace GOP congress persons who have joined Donald Trump's cabinet. While Democrats have come close to winning, given the partisan leaning of those districts, they have yet to light a cigar. Our co-hosts debate how important these "special elections" are, and whether the Democrats need a leadership change.

Related Links

Where Can Democrats Win? By Nate Silver in FiveThirtyEight

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Episode 12: The Religious Left (Revisited)

July 5, 2017

Juhem and Luciano revisit a topic from their very first episode. The New York Times recently revived discussion of the religious left with a long and in-depth piece about the problems getting the movement going. Juhem and Luciano discuss the article and some other pieces reacting to it. They also offer their opinion about the limits of the religious left, and why those limitations can help the secular left carve its own political space.

 

Links:

NY Times Article

Mark Silk blog post

Friendly Atheist Podcast

The LatiNone on evangelicals for Trump

The LatiNone on secular political representation

The LatiNone on why candidates ignore secular voters

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Episode 11: Washington vs. Managua

June 28, 2017

In the second part of our Paris Accord episode Luciano explains why Nicaragua was not among the countries that signed the agreement and why the USA leaving is not a comparable action. Juhem discusses Latinx public opinion on climate change and theorizes about how transnational ties influence Latinx perspectives on this issue.  

Related links:

Juhem's piece: "Latino/as are Key to the Future of Climate Change Policies"

Juhem & Dan Cox piece: "Are Transnational Ties Leading Latinos to Express Greater Concern about Climate Change?"

North Korea blasts Trump as 'silly,' 'ignorant' over Paris Accord withdrawal

US joins only Syria and Nicaragua on climate accord 'no' list

Cover image source: NASA

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Episode 10: Pittsburgh > Paris

June 21, 2017

President Trump got the United States out of the Paris Climate Accord(s) earlier this month. This week, in the first of two episodes dedicated to analyze this event, Luciano explains what is the Paris Climate Accord, why it is important, and the limits of this international agreement. Juhem discusses the public opinion on climate change and introduces the concept of "Trumpslating": the art of translating the President's statements into something that makes sense.

Related links:

PRRI/AAR Religion, Values and Climate Change Survey

Yale Program on Climate Change Communication

President Trump's speech on Paris Climate Agreement (annotated by NPR)

Cover image source: NASA

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Episode 9: Counting Atheists

June 14, 2017

 This week Juhem and Luciano discuss two articles exploring the same piece of research: Are atheists undercounted in the United States? Juhem focuses on the different ways surveys measure non-belief while Luciano questions whether people who do not use the word atheist should be identified as such. The discussion, naturally, later revolves about politics and whether an openly atheist politician can have a long and successful career.

Links:

Is one American in Four an Atheist? (Tom Jacobs, Pacific Standard)

Way More Americans May Be Atheists Than We Thought (Daniel Cox, Fivethirtyeight.com)

 Other links:

'American Nones' ISSSC Report (2009)

'Nones on the Rise' Pew Report (2012)

'Exodus' PRRI Report (2016)

Secular Nation podcast on the Freethought Equality PAC

Image source: Religion News Service

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Episode 8: The War on Public Schools in North Carolina

June 7, 2017

Recently, the Republican-controlled legislature in North Carolina removed
funding for schools in districts represented by Democratic Party legislators.
Luciano discusses the politics behind this move and the consequences of
these actions while Juhem places these events in the larger national contexts of partisan polarization and the role of public education in society.

Links

Luciano on "North Carolina’s Highly Problematic General Assembly Republicans."

News Observer article

Image source: North Carolina GOP

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