Five for Friday: Family Dinners, Morality Questions

By Stan Friedman

CHICAGO, IL (July 25, 2014) — Many Covenanters routinely share links to social media articles and videos with one another that Covenant News Service believes may be of interest to others. Each Friday we post five of them. Following is a sample of those submissions—their inclusion does not represent an endorsement of any views expressed.

Why Families Need to Sit Down and Eat Dinner Together

From the article:

–       The average American eats one in every five meals in the car.

–       One in four eat at least one fast-food meal every day.

–       A majority of families report eating one meal together less than five days a week.

In families that eat meals together at least five times a week, children are significantly less likely to be obese, abuse alcohol or drugs, be truant from school, or do poorly academically.

Higher Calling, Lower Wages — the Collapse of the Middle Class Clergy

We are in the midst of a radical shift that has implications for how congregations do ministry and how seminaries do education. Kurt Fredrickson, the Fuller faculty member quoted in the story, served at Simi Valley Covenant Church north of Los Angeles for 24 years, including 18 as its senior pastor.

Is Evangelical Morality Still Acceptable in America?

Are some Christians being unfairly shamed out of the public sphere? This article presents a thoughtful perspective on current religious-liberty debates. And the 2,500 comments point to the fact that such conversations are sure to elicit strong responses.

Rules of Engagement for Ethnic Slurs

There is a lot of disagreement within ethnic groups about who — if anyone — can use certain words. Whether you agree or disagree, Eric Liu’s article is worth the read and consideration. Would Don Rickles’ humor be OK today? The TV show “South Park” uses such language all the time. Is that acceptable? (Leaving aside the question for the moment of whether South Park is acceptable.)

To Truly Shame Putin, Show Us the Bodies of MH17

Given the writer’s point of view, I wonder if he would use the same logic to show images of people killed by Hamas or the Israeli Army. Would he show the images of innocent people killed by American drone strikes? I was horrified recently to watch a video of a mother who just learned her child was one of four killed on a Gaza beach. Journalists were crowding around her as she made her way to see her dead son. These are tougher judgment calls than many people think, and many journalists do give a lot of consideration as to whether to run these kinds of photos.

This link references a story I wrote while working at the Topeka Capital-Journal about a boy who was killed by a hit-and-run driver. We had a long discussion in the newsroom as to whether we should run the photo of the boy’s family at the scene. Part of that discussion included, “What if it was us in the picture?”








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